Sport

Rangers handle Hurricanes in Game 4 to even win playoff series

Underdogs or not, Rangers reinserted themselves convincingly in this second-round series against the Hurricanes.

After losing the first two games of Round 2 away, Rangers effectively protected the home ice and leveled the series with a Game 3 win and an inspiring 4-1 win over the Hurricanes in Game 4 on Tuesday night at 2-2 from Madison Square Garden to send this matchup back to Raleigh, NC, which looked very different from how it started.

In New York, the Rangers Carolinas typically stifled cohesive team play. They’ve worked on the right balance between scoring and a solid defensive structure. And as a result, Rangers quickly turned it into a competitive series.

Oh, and the Hurricanes are now going 0-5 this postseason.

“It’s great to have leveled the streak again,” said Ryan Lindgren, who recorded his first multi-point playoff game of his career with two assists to win. “We played good hockey in the first two games in Carolina. We were a confident group all year. We played the hockey we wanted to play in Carolina even though we didn’t get the number of points we wanted.

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Hurricanes center Steven Lorentz battles Rangers defenseman Jacob Trouba.
Corey SIPKIN

“But I think that speaks only for our team. We’ve been down, but we’re never out.”

Jacob Trouba got Rangers going when he rolled over Canes’ fourth-liner Maxi Domi in the first half, presumably in revenge for what head coach Gerard Gallant called a cheap shot at Lindgren after the final whistle in Game 3.

Domi’s linesmate Steven Lorentz stepped in to fight Trouba, who brought in his fair share of punches and gave Rangers a power play when Lorentz was hit with five minutes for the fight, a 10-minute misconduct and an instigator infraction.

Andrew Copp then hit Frank Vatrano with a cross-zonal pass for a 1-0 lead at 13:31 of the first.

“It was a huge win,” said Copp, who added another assist just over two minutes later in Adam Fox’s 2-0 win before scoring the final goal in the third goal. “Obviously if they take that penalty and we capitalize, the flow of play changes a bit.”

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The Rangers celebrate a goal during their Game 4 win over the Hurricanes to level the streak.
Corey SIPKIN
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Andrew Copp
Corey SIPKIN

Carolina has had its stretches, the long and suffocating ones, where it pins its opponents in the offensive zone and holds the ball for what feels like minutes. Teuvo Teravainen escaped the shutout early in the third period with a goal.

But Rangers didn’t want – and didn’t want – to let the Canes get to their game.

Rangers goalie Igor Shesterkin deserves a lot of the credit. His 43 saves in Game 3 and 30 stops in Game 4 speak for themselves. But this was arguably Rangers’ most complete game of the playoffs.

The Rangers could have faltered as they went two-zero behind against the mighty Hurricanes. The fact that they felt they played well enough to win both competitions could have been deflating. Instead, they built on that and leveled the playing field.

“I think we’re confident,” said Copp. “After the two games in Carolina it was important to stay balanced where both games were pretty much right there and we maybe didn’t produce that much offensively but we did a lot of good things. Now we get two games where we win, we play well, we only give up two goals in total and now this [talk is reversed] now on her.

“We’ve got to just block that all out and just stick with our game and now that the lads are feeling a little bit better, we’ve got to drive that momentum to Carolina.”

https://nypost.com/2022/05/24/rangers-handle-hurricanes-in-game-4-win-to-even-playoff-series-2/ Rangers handle Hurricanes in Game 4 to even win playoff series

JOE HERNANDEZ

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