Radulov helps Canadiens beat Rangers 3-1 for series lead

Rufina Vignone
Aprile 21, 2017

It is their experience that will be leaned upon as the Blueshirts try to break their Garden malady, which entered Tuesday at a franchise postseason worst six-game losing streak.

That focus seems to be on forechecking the slower Rangers defensemen and letting goaltender Carey Price see as many shots as possible.

The Canadiens, meanwhile, just want to continue doing the things that have brought them success, no matter who the Rangers have in their lineup for Game 4.

Through much of the first two games and essentially all of Game 3, Montreal forced NY into neutral-zone dumps, most of which were cleared easily. We played a better game. He shielded the puck from the Rangers' Kevin Hayes and, with one hand on his stick, worked the puck around Lundqvist for his second goal of the series to make it 3-0.

"Quite frankly, I think we were running out of the way trying to hit guys too much", coach Bruce Boudreau said.

Montreal's Torrey Mitchell scores his team's first goal in Game 4 against the Rangers Tuesday in NY.

Head coach Alain Vigneault praised his teams effort by saying, "We knew we had to respond as a group and that's what this group did tonight". That goal would remain intact throughout the third period, where the Rangers continued to pressure the Canadiens in the offensive zone.

It was unquestionably the Rangers' best start to a game in this series, notching the first few scoring chances and rocking the Canadiens back on their heels and into second place in the race for loose pucks. "But you know it's one game at a time and [I'm] looking to get better".

Somehow this and 54 saves was not enough.

Montreal went 2 for 3 with the man advantage and killed all three NY power plays. "A lot of times in Game 2, they were on top of us". He scored a massive goal early in the second period to put the Rangers up 2-1, and if not for the crossbar, would have buried another in the third period.

"They're playing very well defensively", said NY coach Alain Vigneault, who added that the Rangers' fourth line of Tanner Glass, Jesper Fast and Oscar Lindberg has been his best forward combination. So yeah, there's obvious some concern with the officiating in this game and series overall.

The game was tied 1-1 after the first period as Montreal's Torrey Mitchell scored at 18:57, matching Jesper Fast's goal midway through the period that gave the Rangers an early lead. By comparison, Montreal was credited with 29 shots on goal. Artturi Lehkonen, Shea Weber and Alexander Radulov scored in the win while Brady Skjei got a late goal for the Rangers to avoid a shutout. Price also made a nice glove save on Michael Grabner 2 1/2 minutes later.

The Leafs blew a 2-0 lead in Game 1, or they could potentially have had a 2-0 series lead against this year's President's Cup winning team.

The adjustments could come in the form of inserting rookie Pavel Buchnevich into the lineup for Tanner Glass, a fourth-line grinder who has one of the Rangers' five goals that haven't been scored into an empty net this series. In the third period, Gallagher looked to retrieve the puck from Skjei behind the Rangers' net by hitting him. "It's going to be a lesson for us, to make sure we come out better in the next one".

On Friday, Jeff Petry opened the score-sheet for the hosts four minutes into the first period.

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