The atmosphere at Madison Square Garden didn't seem like a regular season game when the puck dropped but more like an old school rivalry renewed. And that's the way the both teams played as S. Avery and B. Gervais mixed it up only 2:28 into the first.
The Islanders were able to get on the board first on a fanned shot attempt by D. Girardi that the Islanders recovered and tried to thread a pass in between two Rangers that went deep into the corner but came out to K. Okposo as he slide one across to F. Nielsen and an empty net on a bang bang play for a 1-0 lead.
Period two would see the Rangers get their chances while throwing 15 shots at D. Roloson but not connecting on one. A good looking power play from the Rangers ended up being a Short Handed conversion by the Islanders when K. Okposo would battle to a puck in the Rangers end and tip a pass to B. Comeau as he was able to squeeze one through Lundqvist's pads for a 2-0 Islander lead.
This deflated the Rockin Garden crowd at this point and it seemed to change the face of the game where the Rangers were out shooting the Islanders 20-14 by period two's end.
The Rangers new this was an important game with three teams all in the mix for that eight spot and the Islanders right on their tail. The Rangers would go on a power play due to a boarding penalty on B.Comeau and would generate some chances that Roloson would turn aside but just as the penalty expired C. Druy would take a low blast that Roloson would make the save but it redirected in front to B. Dubinsky as he pushed the puck to his back hand and sent it home for a one goal game with 13:53 remaining.
This goal got the Garden crowd alive again and Rangers responded by pumping shots at the Islanders goal keep. With time running down the Rangers would get a late power play and although they would come close by hitting a post by the time the penalty expired the Rangers would be up a man again but this time with an empty net and Lundqvist on the bench. Again Dubinsky planting himself in front of the Islanders goal was able to redirect a R. Callahan shot that would hit the back of the mesh that would erupt a Garden crowd on the edge of their seats.
Enter the over time session and the Rangers four game win streak would come to an end when K. Okposo would gain the Rangers zone dish it off to F. Nielsen only to get it back and rip a wrister that was able to beat Lundqvist for an Islanders winner. It was Okposo first goal in 19 games but he played a very good one last night also getting two assists on the Islanders first two goals.
Rangers played a well fought game that earned them a much needed point out of this game while out shooting the Islanders 38-22. Their win streak started against the Islanders and ended with them. The Rangers are 4-0-1 in their last five and can take out a lot of positives from last night's game including coming from behind a two goal deficit in the third and winning a lot of physical one on one battles in the corners, but most of all getting the point out of it.
Next up for the Rangers are the Flyers at the Garden on Wednesday night.
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