NEW YORK (AP) — The Ottawa Senators took advantage of their chances on special teams against the New York Rangers on Wednesday night.
Brady Tkachuk had a goal and an assist and the Senators earned a 4-1 win against the Rangers.
Bobby Ryan, Zack Smith and Brian Gibbons also scored while Anders Nilsson made 27 saves as the league-worst Senators picked up their second win in the past three games. Colin White also had two assists.
“We needed the energy to come from different sources tonight,” Senators coach Marc Crawford said while dressing four defensemen under the age 25. “Our young guys played well. Our young defenseman all played well tonight. It’s a big challenge, cause you are taking a step up and playing against NHL guys.”
Lias Andersson scored for New York and Henrik Lundqvist stopped 27 of 31 shots as the Rangers fell for the second straight game.
Ryan opened the scoring when he sent a wrist shot past the glove of Lundqvist at 12:14 of the first period. Chris Tierney delivered the puck from below the goal line to set up Ryan for the power-play goal. Tkachuk also assisted on the play.
“We played a full 60-minute effort tonight,” Nilsson said after his 11th victory with Ottawa since he was traded from Vancouver earlier this season. “We had good power play and a good PK.”
While skating down a man 1:15 after the first goal, the Senators doubled their advantage when Smith redirected a puck past Lundqvist. Smith’s ninth of the season was set up when he and Magnus Paajarvi executed a give-and-go around Rangers defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk.
Pavel Buchnevich, who returned after missing one game with an upper-body injury, also failed to pick up Smith driving to the net.
“It was just an embarrassing effort all around from us,” Rangers defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk said. “I don’t know if we just expected the game to come easy or whatever it was tonight, but we certainly didn’t put forth an effort that deserved a result.”
Ottawa converted on a two-man advantage at 3:51 of the second period to extend its lead to three. Tkachuk collected a loose puck near the side of the net and stuffed it home for his 22nd of the season. White and Thomas Chabot assisted on the play.
The Rangers converted a short-handed chance of their own when Anderson performed a nifty backhand, forehand deke to beat Nilsson at 4:52 of the second period. Vladislav Namestnikov and Brendan Smith assisted on the play.
Lundqvist, who has only two wins since Feb. 1st, was denied his 450th NHL victory for his sixth consecutive game.
“It doesn’t matter if you played 14 years or 40 games in this league, there is always a reason to go out there and leave everything you got,” Lundqvist said. “It’s just disappointing because it comes down to a couple of plays if our effort is a little higher I think there are no goals.”
Gibbons scored his eighth of the season at 14:58 of the third period to make it 4-1. White and Gibbons completed a nifty passing sequence that led to the tap-in opportunity to seal the game for the Senators.
“We were just flat, very very flat,” Rangers coach David Quinn said after the game. “Not a lot of emotion, not a lot of passion, not a lot of enthusiasm on the bench.”
NOTES: Prior to the game, the Rangers announced that Mika Zibanejad has been named the winner of the 2018-19 Steven McDonald Extra Effort Award. The award is presented annually to the Ranger who, as chosen by the fans, “goes above and beyond the call of duty.” ”He works hard on both ends of the ice and makes a difference all over the ice, more than any other player on this team,” Lundqvist said of Zibanejad. “He deserves it.”
Rangers host the Columbus Blue Jackets on Friday night in the season’s final home game. They’ll close out the year in Pittsburgh on Saturday.
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