Zibanegad keeps Rangers alive and Vegretzky sinks hats

The Florida Panthers defeated the Washington Capitals in Game 6 to eliminate Alex Ovechkin’s team in 2022 at the end of the season. That means the Cats will face either the Toronto Maple Leafs in an all-out thriller or the Tampa Bay Lightning in a battle that spans all of Florida, depending on how Game 7 shakes out on Saturday.

Speaking of the game, the New York Rangers beat the remaining Pittsburgh Penguins to survive the first round and pushed the battle to Manhattan for an all-or-nothing result.

And they did it in an eerily familiar way.

This is how things got messy the first time the Rangers managed to survive Game 5: Pittsburgh got off to a strong start with a 2-0 lead. Rangers woke up in the second half, equalizing with two quick goals and then adding a third to take the lead. Pittsburgh managed to draw with one of them, and the Rangers tied the game 3-3 before scoring two more goals on third base.

Game 6 went like this: exactly the same. Pence is leading by two goals, two early draw goals from New York, Rangers take the third lead, another goal from Pittsburgh and two more from Rangers on the ice.

copy and paste.

But the course of these two matches was in line with the current situation of each club. In both matches, both teams proved their stamina by showing that they had enough ability to score important goals in critical moments. But with all the bodies gone, the penguins seem to lack what they need to get over that final hill.

It’s pretty impressive to be this close, considering the offensive balance that comes with the best strikers (Sydney Crosby), the two best net pros (Tristan Garry, Casey Desmith) and the most stable defender (Brian Dumoulin). Ability to conquer in Rijkaard Raquel.

They managed to get close, but weren’t exactly a match for the Rangers. Now they are making one last move to start this train.

Mica makes noise

After scoring 29 goals in the regular season and accumulating 151 goals in the last half year, Mika Zibanijad found himself sitting with a goose egg in the goal column as he entered this crucial Round 6 game.

Considered one of the club’s main offensive threats, the 29-year-old had just four assists in the first five games of the series. Most disturbing was that he did not help himself while putting the discs in the net. Zibanegad finished the regular season with the second most shots from any goalkeeper and had only three shots on the net in the team’s one-game triple marathon. He returned alive in five rounds the next night, but only landed two shots in each of his last three games.

Friday night, it finally began to break through Route 93.

To keep his club in the game, it was the smooth skating Swede who scored two quick goals early in the second half to level the game and scored a one-two goal by a minute and a half. This pair is among the two fastest goals scored in qualifying by any Ranger in four decades. Zibanijad is also the only goalkeeper to score more than one goal in a potential qualifying match since joining the organization.

Then he came out and formed the Rangers team. next Two goals scored alongside Chris Kreider threw him aside.

Zibanegad always comes as a group, and that’s true in the playoffs as well. In the end, he finished the 6th game with six shots and four points, a crucial performance by one of New York’s most important captains while keeping the season alive.

CLAUDE overtakes the clutch

We saw a few teams take advantage of trade time catches last night, with St. The Louis Blues took an important end goal and added Nick Lady to end their streak, and Humpus Lindholm took a proud leap forward in his return to the Bruins. 7. play

The most famous deadlines of the season were also productive on Friday night.

Three times in Game 6, Claude Giroud showed the Panthers leaders why their effort to get him into town was well worth it. The first came in the middle of the third half, and the Capitals were up 2-1 as they tried to get into the parade in Game 7. Finally, Giroux began his streak by sending him out of the area by flying from a safe place. Carter Verhaghi hands the puck to Aaron Ekblad, who rushes towards the offensive zone.

As soon as Eckblad looked at the board, Giroud rushed to join him – the 34-year-old took the pass, made five holes and held the match against two of them.

Five minutes after the end of the frame, Giroud was looking great again, catching a shuffling disc in front of the hat net and bringing him home to Alexander Barkov, who put him home for a temporary advantage over Florida. Complicating matters further, a goal from TJ Oshie in the final minutes of the period sent the game into overtime.

And there, in the hottest part of the Florida season, there was Giroux again, who saved the puck behind the Washington net and sent a fine pass to Verhaeghe, who made no mistake for victory.

The veteran didn’t have full control over the course of the six game series, but he still scored four points in his first five games. In his final debut, however, he showed top-notch skill that kept the Panthers going in time for him, and that was the difference after all.

Carter Vergretzky?!

What can we say about this ridiculous Verhaeghe run so far?

We listed how important he was to the Panthers’ success at the end of their streak a few nights ago, but the 26-year-old continues to add more to the stack with each passing game.

In the first three games of the series, Washington came out with a 2-1 series lead that looked great. Then the Cats had three straight wins to finish – and Verhaghi did just that in all three games:

Game 4: Verhaeghe scores the first goal to end the game in a draw, then scores again in overtime and ends the game. the thread was pulled.

Game 5: With Florida leading 3-0, Verhaeghe took the reins and brought his team back – the Panthers scored five goals in a row, finished 23rd in five games, scored two goals and had an assist in the other three. Florida is pushing the boundaries by taking the lead.

Game 6: Just when it seems like a quiet night for Verhaeghe, just a small pass to his name with three exhausting spells, chain comma in overtime there – go to skate stroke, top basket away for backhand. Yes.

By winning the last overtime winner, Verhaeghe joined the elite and elite society. He is the fourth player in NHL history to score more than one extra goal in a year (among others: Mill Hill in 1939, Maurice Richard in 1951, Corey Perry in 2017). He also became the 12th player in NHL history – and only fourth in the last 20 years – to score a game-winning goal in three consecutive games.

He currently has 12 points in these playoffs and is tied for league title with Conor McDavid. Six goals is just one difference from the top of the league.

The craziest part: guess how much Florida paid for this global production this year? A good amount is a million dollars.

The old Bolts tramp, now fully visible to the Cats, ninthHighest paid in Florida. He is the 18th highest paid player on the overall roster – in fact, the penalty for retrieving the Panthers cap for retired striker Roberto Longo this season cost them more than Vergaeghe ($1,092,122).

But so far Verhaeghe has been the most important Panther team in these playoffs and not particularly close.

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