Shesterkin, Chytil help Rangers top Hurricanes, force Game 7

May 28, 2022, 8:00 AM | Updated: 10:01 pm

New York Rangers center Filip Chytil (72) celebrates after scoring on Carolina Hurricanes goaltende...

New York Rangers center Filip Chytil (72) celebrates after scoring on Carolina Hurricanes goaltender Antti Raanta during the second period of Game 6 of an NHL hockey Stanley Cup second-round playoff series, Saturday, May 28, 2022, in New York. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

(AP Photo/John Minchillo)

NEW YORK (AP) — The New York Rangers got off to a strong start and didn’t need a comeback to win another elimination game.

One more like this — but on the road — and they’ll be heading to the Eastern Conference finals.

Igor Shesterkin stopped 37 shots and became the fifth goalie in NHL history to have two assists in a playoff game, and the Rangers beat the Carolina Hurricanes 5-2 on Saturday night to force a deciding Game 7 in their second-round series.

“He made some real key saves for us,” Rangers coach Gerard Gallant said. “Obviously the two assists are huge, but I think he was trying to get three there in the third when he passed it up the middle. He’s outstanding. He’s been like that all year for us.”

Tyler Motte and Mika Zibanejad scored in the first period, Filip Chytil had two goals in the second, and Artemi Panarin tallied in the third period to help New York win its fourth straight elimination game, including Games 5, 6, and 7 in the first round against Pittsburgh. They had to rally from a deficit in each of those games.

The Rangers also set a franchise record with their sixth straight home win since a three-OT defeat to the Penguins in Game 1 of that series.

“Didn’t surprise me,” Gallant said. “I knew we’d come out hard and play well. … We jumped on them early, got a couple of goals and that was key.”

Game 7 is back in Raleigh, North Carolina, on Monday night. The winner will open the Eastern Conference finals at home against Tampa Bay on Wednesday night.

Shesterkin had assists on Zibanejad’s first-period goal and Chytil’s second of the second period to give him three assists in 13 postseason games.

“Tonight was definitely an important game,” Shesterkin said through a translator. “We had to win and that’s exactly what we did. About the two assists, honestly, I think it was mostly the guys that did all the work. I just got them the puck and they delivered.”

Brady Skjei had a goal and an assist, and Vincent Trochek also scored for the Hurricanes. Carolina fell to 0-6 on the road this postseason, becoming the first team in NHL history to lose its first six road games in a postseason.

Antti Raanta was pulled after giving up three goals on 13 shots. Pyotr Kochetkov came on and finished with 10 saves.

There’s one positive for the Hurricanes — and perhaps a bad omen for the Rangers — with Game 7 in Carolina: They’re 7-0 at home in these playoffs.

“We came out pretty raw again,” Hurricanes coach Rod Brind’Amour said. “We got behind again and that’s where it got tough. … It’s behind us now, we turn the page. The good news is we don’t have to end on that. We have another shot here.”

The Rangers’ win in Game 6 against the Penguins is their only road victory of the postseason, and they’ve been outscored in the three losses at Carolina in this series by a 7-2 margin. That’s a stark contrast to their 12-4 advantage in the three wins at home.

“We have to play how we play at home,” Chytil said. “We found a way to win in Pittsburgh. So, it’s a Game 7 now, so we have to find a way to win the game. … We have to play hard, we have to play our game and don’t focus on any other thing. Just focus on the game and I think we can win the game.”

Leading 4-2, the Rangers had a 5-on-3 power play for nearly a minute early in the third period. Panarin made it 5-2 as he scored from between the circles at 7:43. It was his fourth of the postseason and first since the series winner in overtime of Game 7 of the first round against Pittsburgh.

The Rangers led 2-0 after 20 minutes and added to it early in the second period. Chytil got the puck from Fox, skated up the right side and beat Raanta from the right circle. It ended Raanta’s night as he was replaced by Kochetkov.

Skjei fired a shot past Shesterkin for his fifth career playoff goal and first this year to get the Hurricanes on the scoreboard at 5:05. It came on Carolina’s 18th shot.

Chytil got his second of the night and fourth of the postseason on a backhander past Kochetkov through traffic from the left circle at 6:47 to restore the Rangers’ three-goal lead.

Trochek scored on a rebound in front with 7:13 left in the middle period to pull Carolina to 4-2.

Shesterkin denied Sebastian Aho on a breakaway 7:05 into the game, and then stopped follow shots by Teuvo Teravainen and Aho seconds later to keep the Hurricanes off the scoreboard.

At the other end, Motte gave the Rangers a 1-0 lead as he brought the puck up the ice, skated in and beat Raanta from the left circle at 7:22 for his second of the playoffs — and this series.

Zibanejad extended the Rangers’ lead to 2-0 just shy of the midpoint of the period. He got a pass from Adam Fox, brought the puck across the blue line, deked one defender out of the way, skated in and fired a shot from the right circle through Raanta’s five-hole at 9:51 for his seventh of the postseason.

It gave the Rangers a power-play goal for the fourth straight game, accomplishing the feat in the playoffs for the first time since 2008.


F Barclay Goodrow returned to the Rangers lineup for the first time since Game 1 of the first round series against Pittsburgh. He was out with a lower body injury. Kevin Rooney was scratched to make room for Goodrow on the fourth line.


Follow Vin Cherwoo at http://www.twitter.com/VinCherwooAP


More AP NHL: https://apnews.com/hub/NHL and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Associated Press

Ex-Packer Guion gets 1 year for domestic violence assault

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) — Former Green Bay Packers defensive tackle Letroy Guion was sentenced to one year in jail after pleading no contest in a domestic violence assault at his home last fall. Brown County Circuit Court Judge Thomas Walsh also ordered Guion on Tuesday to serve three years’ probation and complete a domestic […]

1 year ago

Joe Jarzynka...

Associated Press

Durant eager for Suns debut vs. Hornets after knee injury

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Kevin Durant has been through quite a bit during his 15-year NBA career — but joining a new team midway through the season is a new one for the 13-time All-Star. The 34-year-old Durant doesn’t seem all that worried. Durant makes his highly anticipated Phoenix Suns debut on Wednesday night against […]

1 year ago

FILE - Miami Dolphins head coach Brian Flores stands on the sideline during the second half of an N...

Associated Press

Judge: NFL coach can press discrimination claims in court

NEW YORK (AP) — NFL Coach Brian Flores can pursue some of his discrimination claims against the league and its teams in court rather than through arbitration, a judge ruled Wednesday. The written decision by Judge Valerie Caproni in Manhattan was issued months after lawyers for the league tried to get the lawsuit moved to […]

1 year ago

Chicago Blackhawks goaltender Alex Stalock cools off in the first period during an NHL hockey game ...

Associated Press

Kane trade reinforces hard reality of Blackhawks rebuild

CHICAGO (AP) — After days of speculation, the harsh reality of the Chicago Blackhawks’ situation was reinforced by one move in a flurry of transactions ahead of the NHL trade deadline. Showtime is over, at least in Chicago, and a seemingly bright future is, well, way off in the distance. The reverberations of Chicago’s decision […]

1 year ago

FILE -  Yves Jean-Bart, president of the Haitian Football Federation, wearing a protective face mas...

Associated Press

Disgraced ex-Haitian soccer president announces he’s back

PORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP) — Haiti’s former soccer federation president whose lifetime ban from sport over sexual abuse allegations was overturned last month announced Wednesday that he is reclaiming his position. Yves Jean-Bart’s defiant announcement could lead to a standoff with FIFA, which already has appointed an emergency management committee to lead the Haitian Football Association […]

1 year ago

FILE - Green Bay Packers' Aaron Rodgers walks off the field after an NFL football game against the ...

Associated Press

Rodgers says decision on future will come ‘soon enough’

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) — Aaron Rodgers says he will make a decision on his future “soon enough” as the four-time MVP quarterback ponders whether to play next season and if his future remains with the Green Bay Packers. Rodgers, 39, discussed his future while speaking on an episode of the “Aubrey Marcus Podcast” that […]

1 year ago

Shesterkin, Chytil help Rangers top Hurricanes, force Game 7