Hurricanes-Rangers Game 6: Carolina falls to New York, 5-2, at Madison Square Garden

·7 min read
Robert Willett/rwillett@newsobserver.com

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The Carolina Hurricanes have a chance to clinch their second-round NHL playoff series against the New York Rangers in Game 6 on Saturday at Madison Square Garden, coming off a 3-1 home win in Game 5.

Game 7, if necessary, would be at 8 p.m. Tuesday at PNC Arena in Raleigh (ESPN).

The News & Observer’s Chip Alexander and Luke DeCock are at MSG and will have live observations from the scene. Justin Pelletier is following along from Raleigh.

Hurricanes’ healthy scratches fight physical, mental battle, ready to play when needed

How to watch

Saturday’s game is available on ESPN (Sean McDonough, Ray Ferraro, Emily Kaplan). Bally Sports South will broadcast a Hurricanes-focused postgame show featuring Abby Labar and Shane Willis. Mike Maniscalco and Willis have the call on the Hurricanes Radio Network (WCMC-99.9 in the Triangle).

Third period

No more shenanigans, no more game: The Rangers don’ convert on the final power play, but it matters nothing. The Canes fall on the road — again. Rangers 5m Cans 2, Game 6 final.

Rangers get a power play: Sebastian Aho to the box for roughing after getting hit by Jacob Trouba and then pulling Trouba’s helmet off.

More penalties, more shenanigans: Miller with the penalty for tripping, and then DeAngelo shoots the puck after the whistle and draws an unsportsmanlike call. We’ll skate 4-on-4 again.

Things getting... crispy: Two great saves by Igor Shesterkin and then a big ol’ pileup near the net. Mulitple players incvolved there, Trocheck in the middle of it. Canes penalty to Trockeck, Rangers penalty to Goodrow. 4-on-4 play forthcoming.

Rangers cash in on the 5-on-3: All but salting this one away, the Rangers score with the extra skater, Artemi Panarin on the board for the Rangers and they take a commanding 5-2 lead.

Now a 4-on-3: Well, this is fun. Canes called for another penalty here on Ian Cole. This will eventually become a one-minute 5-on-3 for the Rangers.

Even-up at 4-on-4: Panarin takes an offensive-zone hooking penalty on the power play. Teams 4-on-4 for two minutes.

Rangers back to the PP: A follow-through from Slavin catches Kreider up high, handing the Rangers a 4-minute power play.

New starters: Zibanejad line starts for New York against the Aho line to start the third. We are under way.

Second period

Vital early third period coming: The Canes were a hot third-period team all season long, but that has yet to manifest into the playoffs. This would be an opportune time for that to happen. But, the Rangers are doing what they need to do, as is keeper Igor Shesterkin. Rangers lead the Canes, 4-2, after two.

Canes another PP: Shesterkin cross-checks Jarvis at the end of a long sustained Hurricanes possession. Shesterkin has 25 saves, two assists and two penalty minutes. The Canes had the puck in the zone for what seemed like forever. Shesterkin came out of his net and just blocked Jarvis from going behind the goal line with a two handed shove. UPDATE: No goals for the Canes here, either.

And Canes to the PP: Kreider for hooking to send the Carolina PP to the ice for the second time. Big opportunity here. UPDATE: The Canes did NOT score on the power play.

Canes get another back: Is there life here? The Canes are on the board a second time as Vincent Trocheck appears to sweep the puck past Shesterkin after a rebound of a Brady Skjei shot.

Shesterkin on the scoresheet: Igor Shesterkin is the fifth goaltender in NHL history to record multiple assists in a playoff game: Pekka Rinne (NSH) - 2017/04/15@ CHI; Jose Theodore (MTL) - 2004/04/11vs BOS; Tom Barrasso (PIT) - 1993/04/20vs NJD; Grant Fuhr (EDM) - 1991/04/22vs LAK are the others. Shesterkin also playing well in his traditional role as goalie.

So much for momentum: Rangers snag another one off the hop after the media timeout. Chytil, for the second time tonight, beats the Canes’ keeper, this time it’s Kochetkov on an weird backhander off the keeper’s shoulder.

Goalie change, and a goal: Minutes after pulling Raanta, the Canes strike. Brady Skjei wrister beats Shesterkin. It’s Skjei’s first playoff goal with the Canes, and it comes against his former team.

Rangers in firm command: The Rangers now in complete control here with a 3-0 lead after Filip Chytil picks a corner clean on Raanta. Not Raanta’s night. Pyotr Kochetkov comes in to replace Raanta.

Long runs of 5-on-5 play: The first and second period have both opened with long stretches of whistle-less play. It benefited the Rangers more in the first frame, the Canes seem to have the better of play early here in the second.

First period

Rangers get the first frame they needed: Done with the opening 20 minutes at Madison Square Garden. It remains 2-0 in favor of the home team. Shots were 15-12 Canes,

Canes get a PP: Canes with a power play. Scored one at home, still looking for one on the road in this series. UPDATE: No scoring from the Canes on the PP, as is normal on the road. Canes DID get a chance on Shesterkin after the kill, though.

Rangers PP goal: The hole gets deeper for the Canes here as Mika Zibanejad, who’s been heating up, got one for the fourth game in a row. 2-0 deficit here seems cavernous.

First power play to the Rangers: Brendan Smith whistled for high-sticking, as he got his stick up on Lafreniere. He’ll get two minutes. Rangers to the PP.

Great chances for Canes, then Rangers on the board: Shesterkin stops Aho on a breakaway and then Teravainen in front, Rangers go the other way and Motte scores on a shot that Raanta simply has to stop. It’s 1-0 Rangers at 7:22 of the first period.

Strong start for Rangers: Staal line with a good shift to start. Once the line change, Rangers come out with Zibanejad line and it has a solid shift, getting a quality chance on Raanta.

Starters familiar: Brind’Amour starting Staal line again. Rangers go with Goodrow’s group.

Pregame

Ethan Bear took warmups as an extra defenseman, which usually suggests someone is a game-time decision, but the pairings were the same as they have been throughout the playoffs during line rushes. For the Rangers, Barclay Goodrow is apparently ready to return after missing 11 games. He’ll replace Kevin Rooney in the lineup.

Morning update

No changes are expected for the Hurricanes, which means Antti Raanta in net. Hurricanes coach Rod Brind’Amour wouldn’t say whether Frederik Andersen might be available for backup duty, but he did say Jack LaFontaine remained the emergency third goalie, which suggests not.

Francis St. Laurent and Gord Dwyer are the referees. That duo worked Game 3 of the first-round series against the Boston Bruins, Steve Barton and Ryan Daisy are the linesmen.

The Rangers have won three straight elimination games, coming back from 3-1 down to win their first-round series against the Pittsburgh Penguins. The only team with a longer home winning streak (five) than the Rangers is ... the Hurricanes (seven).

“I guess we’re kind of used to having our backs against the wall here in these playoffs,” Rangers defenseman — and, briefly, Hurricanes prospect — Adam Fox said Saturday. “I think we know how to play when we’re in this situation. Try really hard, try to get the win, try to take it back to Carolina.”

Among the celebrities expected at MSG on Saturday night: Mariano Rivera.

Hurricanes seek elusive first road win of Stanley Cup playoffs in Game 6 vs. Rangers

Pregame reading

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