Kevin Shattenkirk was brought to Broadway to be the quarterback on the power play, and that is exactly what he has done thus far. Three power play goals in the third period, including one by Shattenkirk himself, propelled the Rangers to their fourth straight win Monday night as they defeated the visiting Columbus Blue Jackets 5-3 at Madison Square Garden.
The first period went scoreless for both teams, with the Rangers holding a 10-4 shot advantage after the first frame. The Rangers had more speed and were quicker to pucks in the first frame. Things looked to be going well for the Rangers until Artemi Panarin and Josh Anderson scored to give the Blue Jackets a 2-0 lead. Michael Grabner scored for the Blueshirts cutting the lead to one going into the third and final period.
From there on out, the third period was all blue shirts and the Rangers took over. Columbus’ third goal by Oliver Bjorkstand was sandwiched between power-play goals by Kevin Shattenkirk, Chris Kreider, and Pavel Buchnevich. The Rangers tied it at two before Bjorkstand made it 3-2. The Rangers then scored two power-play goals to give them a total of four on the night, which was the story of the night and enough to seal the deal. Michael Grabner got his second of the night to put the game to bed and give the Rangers the win in front of its home crowd.
The most encouraging thing about the win was the fight back. They did not lay down and die when they were losing by two goals. They chipped away and kept fighting. A team that was once so low that the fans wanted the head coach to be fired, in just four wins the season has turned around. The Rangers now get their record back to .500 at 7-7-2. The past four games have been the Ranger hockey we all have been waiting for.
The Rangers will try to go for five wins in a row when they host the Boston Bruins in a primetime matchup Wednesday at 8 p.m. Meanwhile, Columbus hosts Nashville tonight at 7 p.m.