Rangers Top Islanders, 5-3, in Season Opener

fullsizeoutput_527The Rangers broke open a 2-2 game with three goals in the final eleven minutes to beat the Islanders Thursday night at The Garden, 5-3, in the season opener for both teams.

Seven players made their debut for the Blueshirts and five of them made it onto the scoresheet. Michael Grabner scored the team’s first goal. Brandon Pirri had a goal and an assist. Mika Zibanejad had two assists, and Pavel Buchnevich and Nick Holden each added an assist.

The Blueshirts held a 2-0 lead going into the 3rd period, on goals from Grabner [at 13:41 of the 1st period] and Mats Zuccarello [at 17:41 of the 2nd]. But the Islanders tied the game up early in the 3rd, on goals from Nick Leddy and Cal Clutterbuck.

The Rangers regained the lead at the 9:45 mark of the 3rd. Chris Kreider took a laser beam of an up-ice pass from Buchnevich and scored to make it 3-2. Pirri’s power play goal at 16:11 made it 4-2, and J.T. Miller‘s empty net goal at 17:37 made it 5-2.

Brock Nelson‘s goal at 18:25 of the 3rd period provided the final 5-3 margin.

Henrik Lundqvist made 25 saves en route to his 375th career NHL win, moving him into 14th place overall in league history.

The Rangers [now 1-0-0, 2 pts] play the Blues in St. Louis Saturday night.