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Rangers Stop Skid, Beat Capitals in Shootout

 

The Rangers escaped with a 5-4 win over the Capitals, their first win in six games. In the game they matched their scoring over the entire losing streak, where they only managed five goals in five goals.

Ryan Callahan put home the decisive goal in the fourth round of the shootout. He hit the crossbar with his shot, but the puck then bounced off the back of Capitals goalie Jose Theodore before trickling across the line. It was also Callahan who opened up the floodgates of scoring in the beginning of the first period, giving the Rangers a 1-0 lead on a one timer from Lauri Korpikoski after the game settled down from a series of fights.

Less than three minutes in the game, the Rangers decided there was no more time to waste to get the team and the arena into an emotional and fiery mood. Colton Orr battled it out with Donald Brashear. And on the very next faceoff, Aaron Voros and Matt Bradley went at it. It set the tone that the Rangers were going to be in the face of the Capitals all night long.

Yet before the first period was over it was 2-1 Washington, following goals from Tomas Fleischmann and Eric Fehr. Korpikoski and Callahan then decided to switch roles in the second period, with Korpikoski putting home a one timer goal with assists by Marc Staal and Callahan.

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Next though it was time for Washington’s Mike Green to take center stage. One of the hottest goal scorers in the league gave the Capitals a 3-2 lead on a snap shot assisted by Alexander Ovechkin and Niklas Backstrom. It was the seventh consecutive game that Green scored a goal, tying the NHL’s all-time mark for defensemen.

He was doesn’t yet either. After the Rangers stormed ahead 4-3 on goals by Markus Naslund and Paul Mara, Green scored his second of the night with a minute left in the second period. All together, the two teams combined for five goals in the second period, all coming in the last 12 minutes of action.

With the game tied at 4, the goaltenders stepped up in the 3 rd period. Both Henrik Lundqvist and Theodore stopped several good scoring chance to keep the score tied. The overtime period didn’t produce any scoring either, leading to the shootout. Nigel Dawes and Ovechkin each scored through three rounds, before Callahan got his lucky bounce and Lundqvist sealed the deal with a save.

The first win in six games is always good news for a club struggling to find its path and the team was clearly excited to move forward past what they hope was just a midseason lull.

 

By: Jake Emen
ProHockey-fans.com Staff Writer

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