Klein Scores Two As West Coast Trip Begins With A Win

Kevin Klein scored two goals and Antti Raanta made 22 saves as the Rangers started a pivotal three-game Western road trip with a 2-1 win over the Ducks Wednesday night in Anaheim. The win broke a three-game losing streak for the Blueshirts. It was the first time in Klein’s 555 game NHL career that he has scored two goals in a game.

The Rangers moved two points ahead of the Islanders for second place in the Metropolitan Division.

Klein played a role in Anaheim’s only goal, too. The Kings jumped out to a 1-0 lead the 14:03 mark of the 1st period when Klein was stripped of the puck in the Rangers’ zone by Corey Perry. Perry passed to Jamie McGinn, who beat Raanta, scoring his 17th goal of the season.

In the 2nd, Tanner Glass‘ shot was stopped by Anaheim goalie John Gibson, but the rebound came out to a wide-open Klein; his wrist shot beat Gibson up high to tie the score 1-1 at 3:11 of the 2nd period.

In the 3rd period, the Blueshirts used some nice passing by the team’s #3 offensive line to take the lead. Kevin Hayes poked a loose puck against the boards up the ice. J.T. Miller, streaking across the blue line in the Anaheim zone, passed to Eric Staal, and Staal passed the puck toward the net, where it deflected off Hampus Lindholm‘s skate and then off Klein’s stick past Gibson for the go-ahead goal at 13:19.

Raanta and the Rangers held off the Ducks in the final minutes and hung on for the 2-1 win.

The Blueshirts did get a scare in the final seconds. Just before the final horn, Cam Fowler‘s slapshot hit Ryan McDonagh in the helmet or back of the neck, and the Rangers’ captain was face down on the ice for several moments after time expired. He did get up and skate off to the locker room.

Raanta is 9-5-2 on the season and has won 5 of his last 6 starts.

The Rangers [now 40-23-7, 87 pts] play the Kings in Los Angeles Thursday night. Henrik Lundqvist will start for the Blueshirts.