Igor Shesterkin had a great evening on Saturday night at Columbus, Ohio, as he had 20 saves in a game for the New York Rangers and earned his third shutout of this season. This is also the 11th time that Heisterkin was able to build a wall and keep the opponents from scoring!
Jimmy Vesey, Chris Kreider, Niko Mikkola and Vincent Trocheck all scored in the game, and Mika Zibanejad additionally provided two assists. This helped the Rangers get closer to the Devils for second place in their Division, which would allow them to have home-ice advantage when playoffs begin. The Devils were playing against the Boston team on Saturday night.
The Rangers’ coach was very happy with the team’s performance in their last game of the regular season. He said it wasn’t an incredibly intense match, but that it was exactly what they needed to succeed. The Columbus goalie had 24 saves in his 150th NHL game as his team lost six out of its last seven matches, tying them with the Chicago Blackhawks for the least amount of points in all of the National Hockey League with 56.
The Blue Jackets coach Brad Larsen said that the Rangers make it hard to create chances since they keep possession of the puck and won’t give it back. He also warned that the Rangers are very dangerous if you turn over the puck too often.
Despite them having fewer shots on goal, after twenty minutes of play, the Rangers had a 2-0 lead thanks to goals from Vesey and Kreider.
At the start of the third period, Mikkola scored his first goal in 109 games and put the Rangers up by three goals. Trocheck then scored a goal with 20 seconds left and the game was over. Zibanejad said they are trying to create good habits so they can be ready for playoffs but also winning keeps everyone’s moods good.
Shesterkin has been playing really well recently, as he’s won 10 out of his last 12 games. He and Alexandar Georgiev have tied for the second most wins in the NHL this year – 37 each!
Sadly, Columbus didn’t get any points today because they were shutout for the 8th time this season (which includes 4 times at home in their past 3 games there!).
On the other hand, New York is amazing; when they score four or more goals, they’ve won every single game (33-0)!
The Blue Jackets asked four players, two defensemen and two forwards to join their team from AHL Cleveland. These players are called Marcus Bjork and David Jiricek (defense), alongside Trey Fix-Wolansky and Joona Luoto (forwards).
Patrick Kane was able to go play in the Rangers game after missing it for two games due to his hip injury – he even ended up getting an assist on Mikkola’s goal!
Zibanejad has been on a roll since then as he extended his point streak to four consecutive games!
Eric Robinson had to leave the game in the second period when he ran into Mikkola in the area between both teams. Initially, Mikkola got five minutes of penalty but then it was cancelled by the referees. Next, New York is going to play against Buffalo on Monday night and Columbus will face Philadelphia on Tuesday night.