Rangers blank Devils again to keep playoff push going

Artemi Panarin collected two goals and an assist as the New York Rangers cruised to a 4-0 victory over the New Jersey Devils on Thursday night at Madison Square Garden, shutting out their division

Artemi Panarin collected two goals and an assist as the New York Rangers cruised to a 4-0 victory over the New Jersey Devils on Thursday night at Madison Square Garden, shutting out their division rival for the second game in a row.

Panarin posted his third multi-goal game of the season. He has 10 goals in 18 games since returning March 13 from a two-week absence for personal reasons.

Defensemen Jacob Trouba and Ryan Lindgren scored in the opening 6:39 as the Rangers improved to 11-4-3 in their past 18 games. The Rangers remain four points behind the Boston Bruins for the fourth and final playoff spot in the East Division.

Colin Blackwell added a career-high three assists while Ryan Strome set up Panarin’s goals as the Rangers beat the Devils for the fourth straight meeting.

Igor Shesterkin had an easy 16-save night to follow up his first career shutout, when he stopped 27 shots Tuesday as the Rangers beat the Devils 3-0. He improved to 6-2-2 since returning from a groin injury.

Artemi Panarin scores his second goal in the second period of the Rangers’ 4-0 win over the Devils.
AP

The Devils played without leading scorers Pavel Zacha and Jesper Bratt, who both sat out because of undisclosed injuries. New Jersey lost its fourth straight and fell to 2-8-2 in its past 12 games.

New Jersey goaltender Mackenzie Blackwood allowed four goals on 33 shots.

The Rangers produced one of their best periods of the season and held a 3-0 lead through 20 minutes.

Just 47 seconds in, Trouba opened the scoring with a rising wrist shot from the right faceoff circle. The tally was set up by a drop pass from Blackwell, who gained possession following a no-look pass by Mika Zibanejad.

Lindgren’s first goal in 98 games since Nov. 10, 2019, came on a wrister from the left circle after getting a slick pass from Panarin with 13:21 remaining in the opening period. It was just the second career goal for Lindgren in 108 games.

Panarin made it 3-0 with eight minutes left in the first when he hammered a slap shot from the left circle over Blackwood while on a two-on-one with Strome. He got his second goal with 7:09 left in the second by converting an easy tap-in at the right side of the crease after getting a pass from Strome, who chased down a loose puck.

Rangers rookie Vitali Kravtsov nearly added his first career goal midway through the third period, but after the Devils challenged, he was ruled offside.

This story originally appeared on: NyPost - Author:Field Level Media

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