Fading Blackhawks Fall To Rangers, 6-3

Associated Press
February 19, 2020 - 9:48 pm
Blackhawks Rangers

David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

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CHICAGO (AP) — Chris Kreider and Mika Zibanejad each had a goal and two assists as the New York Rangers scored five times in the third period and beat the Chicago Blackhawks 6-3 on Wednesday night.

Pavel Buchnevich had a goal and assist, and Filip Chytil, Ryan Strome, and Artemi Panarin scored as New York rebounded from a 3-1 loss to Boston on Sunday to win for the fifth time in six games.

Dominik Kubalik scored twice, giving him 25 goals to lead NHL rookies. Drake Caggiula also connected for Chicago, which has just one win in its last eight games (1-5-2).

Duncan Keith set up Kubalik's first goal for his 500th career assist.

Igor Shesterkin made 37 saves in his return after missing three games with an ankle injury. The 24-year-old has won seven of eight NHL career appearances since making his debut on Jan. 7.

Robin Lehner blocked 35 shots for the fading Blackhawks.

Shesterkin went to the bench briefly with 2:44 left in the second after Jonathan Toews accidentally struck him in the mask with the butt-end of his stick. Shesterkin returned after a trainer attended to him.

Chytil opened the scoring 1:58 in with his 13th goal. He beat Lehner between the pads with a low shot from the left circle.

Kubalik tied it 1-all at 2:29 on a one-timer from the right circle. Set up by Keith's perfect cross-ice feed, Kubalik ripped a shot just inside the right post.

Buchnevich and Strome connected 1:28 apart early in the third period to put New York ahead 3-1.

Buchnevich scored from the slot at 2:33 after taking Kreider's feed from behind the net. Strome made it 3-1 at 4:01 when he pounced on a rebound of Tony DeAngelo's shot, then turned and fired from the front of the crease.

Kubalik scored on a backhander at 6:05 to cap a breakaway, but goals by Kreider and Panarin 53 seconds apart extended New York's lead to 5-2.

Kreider plowed down left wing and then cut to the net and connected at 8:48. Panarin turned and ripped in a loose puck from the slot at 9:41.

Caggiula scored from the slot at 11:39 to cut it to 5-3, but Zibanejad countered just under two minutes later on a tip-in for this 26th goal He has goals in four of his last five games and six in eight.

Henrik Lundqvist dressed as the backup goaltender for the eighth straight game and hasn't started since being pulled against the Dallas Stars on Feb. 3. New York has carried three goaltenders since recalling Shesterkin from Hartford of the American Hockey League for the second time on Jan. 29.

NOTES: Chicago's F Patrick Kane had an assist to give him one point against all 30 other NHL teams this season. … Rangers F Julien Gauthier, acquired on Tuesday from Carolina for D Joey Keane, made his debut with New York. The 6-foot-4, 226-pound Gauthier was a first-round pick of the Hurricanes in 2016. … Chicago C Zack Smith missed his third game with a left hand injury. … The 26-year-old Strome, faced his younger brother, 22-year-old Chicago C Dylan Strome in this one. … Former Blackhawks D Jack O'Callahan, a member of the 1980 U.S. Olympic Gold Medal team, dropped the ceremonial first puck to commemorate the 40th anniversary of the "Miracle on Ice" squad.

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