In the history of the Bruins vs. Rangers, the games have always been close and gritty. In fact, 14 of their last 17 meetings together have been decided by one goal.
That tradition continued today as the Rangers took a 3-2 win in overtime.
With just three seconds left on the clock, Bruins netminder Tuukka Rask stoned Rangers forward Marion Gaborik twice with sprawling kick saves, but the third was just too much to handle, and like that, New York took the extra point, holding a one point lead in the Eastern Conference.
The goal came after Bruins defenseman Andrew Ference was called for a five-minute major and a game misconduct for charging, after hitting Ryan McDonagh hard into the boards, 1:50 into the five-minute overtime period. Though Ference doesn't have any history of malicious hits, he was the first to say he went into the boards too fast and he didn't pull up quick enough.
Though the Bruins nearly killed the entire penalty, those three seconds could tick off the clock soon enough. Rask had 30 saves on 33 shots in the game, and this is his first loss in seven games, and definitely one that was tough to swallow.
"Yeah, it’s two rebounds. I mean, it hit my glove twice, but what sucks even more is, like, three seconds," Rask said. "Somebody liked it, I guess. I mean, it was a pretty thrilling end. Not for me though.
"Well [expletive], I mean three seconds left – it sucks. You’re pretty riled when that happens, and I broke my stick. I had success doing that. Sometimes I can’t break ‘em, but this time, I broke it. Something positive out of it."
After a scoreless first period, both teams came out with exciting second and third frames. Ryan Callahan netted the first goal of the game, just 1:31 into the second. He had just vacated the penalty box and earned a 2-on-1 going towards Rask. Instead of passing across the slot, he opted for the shot and wristed one past Rask to put the Rangers up 1-0.
But, ironically enough, Ference came back for the Bruins and tied the game less than two minutes later. Milan Lucic and David Krejci skated into the zone, and Ference took the chance and crashed the net amidst the chaos that was in front of it. Krejci got the puck to him, and Ference backhanded it up over the glove of Henrik Lundqvist and into the net for his second goal in two games.
Marian Gaborik came back to give the Rangers another lead, slapping the puck into the net after it came bouncing towards him in the slot. Rask was unable to make that save, and the Rags took a 2-1 lead.
Another Bruins defenseman, Adam McQuaid stepped up to tie the game again with 49 seconds left to go in the second period. He shot a sniper through traffic into the back of the net to tie the game up.
The third period was even more exciting and had the crowd on its feet for much of it. The Bruins did test the waters a bit during the period, sending two players to the penalty box after putting only one man in in the previous two periods.
"I mean, we had our opportunities and power play – couldn’t score, and then they had them. It was kind of, a pretty even game, scoring chance-wise," Rask said. "But I think we – especially in the third, we had better legs and really took it to them but couldn’t get that goal. And overtime, it’s always, anything can happen."
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