NEW YORK – With Brad Richards a healthy scratch, the New York Rangers managed to win game four on an overtime goal by Chris Kreider. Last season Kreider burst on the NHL scene with a stellar post season after being called up from Connecticut in the AHL.
“I think the mentality prior to the game and during the game was just, there’s nothing to lose, just go out and play hockey, have fun,” Kreider told NHL Network.
But on this night Nash delivered a perfect saucer pass from the near boards to a breaking Kreider who deflected the puck past Tuukka Rask for the game winner and give the Rangers some life albeit for one night as they now head for TD Gardens in Boston on Saturday.
“I was lucky enough to play with Rick tonight,” Kreider told NBC Sports Network. “I just tried to move pucks and go hard to the net. He’s such a talented player; [he was able] to find my tape, and I just tried to put it on net.”
Regulation was highlighted by the Rangers yielding a goal to Boston and then come back to tie the match.
In the second period, Nathan Horton and Torey Krug gave the Bruins a 2-0 lead and all seem destined for the tee boxes Friday for New York.
Carl Hagelin picked up his third of the post season at 8:39 of the same period and gave the Garden some relief from the pain. Down 2-1 there was still little life in the team and the lack of emotion was palpable to the crowd and television commentators between periods.
With only 1:15 gone n the third, defenseman Zedno Charra cicycled behind his own net with the puck in an effort to get up the near boards. At the same Rask was slow to respond to the play’s direction and was out of position. The confluence of events tied in with the Rangers’ Derek Stepan stealing the puck off Charra’s stick and sliding the puck into the open cage for the 2-2 tie.
The gaffes by both Charra in allowing Stepan access to the puck and Rask being out of position seem ed to give the Rangers a feeling of success. The Bruins indeed were not perfect.
“We were only focused on Game 4 and getting one win,” Stepan told TSN. “We know that it’s not an easy taks what we’ve got in front of us, but one win at a time and just find a way to get back into this thing.”
Just past the eight-minute mark Tyler Seguin picked up his first of the playoffs off a rebound of his first shot on Henrik Lundqvist. The goal silenced the Garden crowd and put a pall on the scene.
More maligned than any single player on the New York roster has been the club’s power play. Going “0 for the series” the power play unit got the Rangers back on the board when Brian Boyle potted the game tying goal at the 10-minute mark.
The two teams held serve the rest of the third period setting the stage for Nash’s and Kreider’s heroics.
Lundqvist made 37 saves on the night while Rask stopped 28 for the Bruins.
Game 5 is set for Saturday at 5:30 eastern.