Win Streak Snapped as Rangers Fall to Canucks, 5-3

fullsizeoutput_527Based on the way the two teams skated Tuesday night at The Garden, you’d have thought the Rangers were playing their second game in as many nights, and the Canucks were winners of five straight.

Vancouver scored four goals in the 3rd period to beat an out-of-kilter New York squad, 5-3, ending the Blueshirts’ five-game winning streak. The five Vancouver goals were the most goals allowed by the Rangers in a game this season.

The Rangers’ offense, which had scored 26 goals during the winning streak, showed none of the speed that had defined the team in the first few weeks of the season.

After a scoreless 1st period, Pavel Buchnevich got the Rangers on the board 7:20 in the 2nd period, scoring his 3rd goal in as many games. Loui Eriksson tied the game, 1-1, with his 1st goal of the season at 15:18.

In the 3rd, Henrik Sedin gave the Canucks a 2-1 lead at 2:29, but then a pivotal sequence: Markus Granlund ran into Antti Raanta at 4:27, and Raanta appeared to bump his head. Granlund was given a penalty, and Raanta stayed in the game briefly. The Rangers took advantage, as Rick Nash scored a power play goal at 5:27 to make it 2-2. It was Nash’s 400th career NHL goal.

Then, at 8:27, Raanta went to the locker room to be checked out further, and Henrik Lundqvist came in, without any warm-up. The Canucks scored two goals off Lundqvist;  Alex Burrows at 9:21 [his first of the season] to make it 3-2, and the Sven Baertschi at 13:08 [his first of the season] that made it 4-2.

Raanta would return to goal with 5:14 to play, but was quickly pulled for an extra attacker. Burrows scored an empty-netter at 16:52 to make it 5-2. Mika Zibanejad scored with 59 seconds to play for the final 5-3 margin.

Lundqvist played 6:19 and gave up the two goals on six shots. Jacob Markstrom made 23 saves for the win.

The Rangers [now 10-4-0, 20 pts] start a four-game road trip Saturday night in Calgary.