NHL Hockey

1
Final 1 2 3 Tot
Carolina 0 1 0 1
NY Rangers 1 1 1 3
3
Hurricanes lead 2-1
Three Stars
1: Igor Shesterkin, NYR (43 Saves)
2: Mika Zibanejad, NYR (1G, 1A)
3: Chris Kreider, NYR (1G)
12:30 PM PT1:30 PM MT2:30 PM CT3:30 PM ET19:30 GMT3:30 12:30 PM MST2:30 PM EST23:30 UAE15:30 ET16:30 BRT, May 22, 2022
Madison Square Garden, New York, New York  Attendance: 18,006

Rangers hope home ice sparks offense vs. Hurricanes

Carolina Hurricanes at New York Rangers

  1. Carolina won Game 2, 2-0, with one former Ranger posting the shutout (Antti Raanta) and another scoring the winning goal (Brendan Smith). Before Game 2, the last playoff shutout against the Rangers by a goalie who used to play for them was by John Vanbiesbrouck for Florida in 1997. Before Smith, the last ex-Ranger to score a game-winning goal against them in the playoffs was Matt Cullen, who had two for Pittsburgh in 2016.
  2. The Hartford Whalers lost the only best-of-seven series in which they won the first two games (to Quebec in six games in 1987). The Carolina Hurricanes are 6-0 in best-of-seven series in which they won the first two games, including this year's series against Boston.
  3. The Rangers are 2-22 in best-of-seven playoff series in which they lost the first two games. Their two series wins were against Montreal in 1996 (4-2) and Washington in 2013 (4-3).
  4. Brendan Smith's shorthanded goal in Game 2 was only the second postseason SHG by a defenseman in Hartford/Carolina franchise history. Their other shorthanded goal by a defenseman in the playoffs came 16 years to the day before Smith's SHG. Mike Commodore scored that goal in the Hurricanes' 3-2 loss to Buffalo in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Final on May 20, 2006.
  5. Antti Raanta has never played a game as a visiting goaltender at Madison Square Garden. Raanta was 9-10-2 with a 2.42 GAA and two shutouts in 25 games (19 starts) at MSG during the two seasons he played with the Rangers (2015-16 and 2016-17). His only playoff game at MSG was in relief of Henrik Lundqvist against Pittsburgh in 2016 (33:56, 1 GA, 13 saves).
  6. Chris Kreider did not have a shot on goal in Game 2. Kreider failed to record a shot on goal in only two of his 81 games during the 2021-22 season (he led the Rangers with 258 SOG), and in none of his eight other games in this year's playoffs.
(AP Photo/Chris Seward)

Through two games, the Carolina Hurricanes are getting just enough offense while their defense is hardly giving the New York Rangers any time or space to create much of anything.

By constantly bottling up a potent offense, the Hurricanes have established control of the second-round playoff series and they look to continue their effective defensive play Sunday afternoon as they take a 2-0 series lead into New York for Game 3.

Carolina has scored four goals so far but has conceded one. The Hurricanes have allowed 49 shots on goal through the first two games and have also blocked 39 shots, including 24 in their 2-0 win in Game 2.

After rallying in the third period and opening the series with a 2-1 overtime win on Wednesday, the Hurricanes got a short-handed goal from former Ranger Brendan Smith with 4:06 left in the second period during a four-minute New York power play in Friday's 2-0 win.

"I think if we just stick to our style, it's eventually going to wear on teams and we're going to find a way to win," Smith said.

In the first round, the Hurricanes needed seven games to beat the Boston Bruins because they allowed 14 goals in their three road games.

Carolina is the first team to win its first six home playoff games since Nashville in 2017. The Hurricanes have won six of seven series when winning their first two home games.

After producing few scoring chances among its 21 shots against Antti Raanta on Friday, New York is hoping to find some of the offense that produced 27 comeback wins in the regular-season and three more in the first round against Pittsburgh. The Rangers won three of four home games in the opening round, including Games 5 and 7 to complete a comeback from a 3-1 series deficit.

"I think nothing's really rattled this team or shook this team," New York defenseman Jacob Trouba said. "It's keep your head down and play that next game. We've been down in games, we've been down in series, we've been in holes before. We just keep grinding our way out and that's what we're going to do. We're going to Game 3 and grind away and hopefully find a way to win that game."

The Rangers are hoping to get some of their star offensive players going along with a power play that went 0-for-4 and totaled two shots on goal in Game 2.

"I'm happy with the way we've performed overall," Rangers coach Gerard Gallant said. "I wish we would've got one of these two games. We probably could've, but that's the way it goes."

Artemi Panarin sent the Rangers into the second round when he scored the game-winner in overtime to beat Pittsburgh but has taken two shots on goal so far. Mika Zibanejad has taken four shots on goal while Chris Kreider has only one shot on goal through two games.

"They're great players. We took their time and space. I think that's the big thing," Smith said. "There are a lot of times when (Panarin) tries to create his space, but if you stay with him, try to take that space away from him, he can't make those elite plays."

--Field Level Media

Updated May 22, 2022

Sports Data API Powered by STATS © 2022 by STATS PERFORM.
Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS PERFORM is strictly prohibited.