NHL Game Summary - NY Rangers at Washington
(Thursday, October 8th)
Final Score: NY Rangers 4, Washington 3
Washington, DC (Sports Network) - Marian Gaborik scored the game-tying goal in the third period and added the game-winning tally about two minutes later, as the New York Rangers edged the Washington Capitals, 4-3, at Verizon Center.
Ales Kotalik also scored for the Rangers, who avenged their loss to the Capitals in the quarterfinal round of last season's Eastern Conference playoffs. Ryan Callahan finished with a goal in the win, while Henrik Lundqvist made 25 saves.
"It definitely felt great out there," said Gaborik. "It was a great team effort to beat Washington."
Nicklas Backstrom had two goals on five shots for the Caps, who dropped their second straight after opening the season with back-to-back wins. Alexander Semin also lit the lamp in the setback. Jose Theodore let in four goals on the 29 shots he faced.
"We didn't work like usual," said Backstrom. "We tried to play too cute and difficult. We have to get back to our rhythm and get more shots on the net."
Trailing 2-1, Backstrom was skating past mid-ice with no one in the zone. He then dumped the puck in and caught Lundqvist off-guard as the puck trickled by his left foot and into the net to tie it up just 3:17 into the third.
The teams traded goals 18 seconds apart, as Backstrom had a one-timer during a power play and Gaborik followed with a shot on goal that trickled through Theodore's legs to make it 3-3 at the 8:09 mark of the third.
Gaborik then gave the visitors the lead with 9:18 left to play, as, on a power play, he skated in and snapped a shot on net that beat Theodore to make it 4-3.
Washington had a chance as it pulled Theodore with 1:05 left in favor of an extra skater, but the Rangers held on for the triumph.
The Caps got on the board at the 9:18 mark of the first period. Brian Pothier had the puck at the top left corner of the zone and sent a cross-ice pass to Semin at the right circle. Semin redirected the puck into the net to make it 1-0.
Washington failed to convert on a two-man advantage later in the frame, as Kotalik was in the box for holding and Dan Girardi was in for tripping, and it was 1-0 at the first intermission.
The Rangers responded with two goals in just over two minutes to claim the lead. During a four-on-four, Callahan skated in on a fast break and beat Theodore through the five hole with the equalizer at the 8:47 mark of the second stanza.
Kotalik then gave New York the lead, 2-1, with a backhander that found the twine with 9:12 left in the second. The score held up through the second intermission.
New York was 1-for-5 on the power play, while the Capitals were 1-for-9 with an extra skater...Washington won three of the four regular-season clashes between these clubs in 2008-09, including both games held in the nation's capital. The Rangers had lost in four straight and seven of their last eight non-playoff visits to the Verizon Center coming in.
10/08 23:41:02 ET