By Craig Shultz
PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer
ANAHEIM, California (Ticker) — Nigel Dawes snapped a tie with
3:16 remaining in the third period as the New York Rangers
started a three-game road trip through California with a 3-1
triumph over the Anaheim Ducks on Tuesday.
Captain Chris Drury and Nikolai Zherdev also scored and Henrik
Lundqvist made 19 saves for the Rangers, who won in regulation
for the first time since November 24. New York has gone 6-4-0
over that 10-game stretch.
Chris Kunitz netted a goal and Jonas Hiller turned aside 27
shots for the Ducks, who saw their five-game home winning streak
come to an end.
With the score knotted at 1-1, Dawes intercepted an outlet pass
by Anaheim defenseman Kent Huskins, skated around blue-liner
Chris Pronger in the right circle and fired a quick wrist shot
that trickled between Hiller’s pads.
It was Dawes’ fourth goal of the season and his first
“Both goals were pretty similar,” Dawes said. “I jumped in
front of their guys to pick off those passes.”
“It was huge goal for our team to start this road trip off,”
Drury said. “It was just a pretty goal.”
It wasn’t so pretty in the other locker room.
“It’s not fun being on this end of a play like that, but they
played the trap and executed well,” Huskins said. “You can’t
put it into the middle against a trapping team. … It’s just a
bad play on my part.”
New York was able to shut down an Anaheim team which had scored
18 goals during its home winning streak.
“I think we are all committed to (defense), quite honestly,” New
York coach Tom Renney said. “It is a good hockey team we played
here, and when you give them the opportunity to counter attack
and go hard to the net, they do that.
“We were able to withstand that and when we couldn’t, Henrik was
there as usual. I thought we played 200-by-85 like a real
intelligent team, and we had the requisite passion and then
managed the game well by managing the puck well.”
New York scored its first two goals off Anaheim turnovers and
all three goals were unassisted.
“We capitalized on our chances,” Drury said. “We had a lot of
plays where there were good passes and we could have finished,
but just didn’t. It was just one of those nights, I guess.”
Anaheim coach Randy Carlyle lamented the giveaways.
“We turned the puck over far, far too many times in the middle
of the ice,” he said. “We played into their hands in too many
situations where we turned the puck over.
“The two direct turnovers were the starting point for the goals
that we gave up. I understand that turnovers are going to
happen – I just think that we seemed to be a little bit off on
everything we tried to do as far as execution.”
New York’s first goal came when Drury intercepted a clearing
pass by Ducks defenseman Scott Niedermayer and wristed a shot
over Hiller’s glove 2:26 into the second period to open the
“I saw (Niedermayer) peeking a little and I thought I would
guess and get to the spot,” Drury said. “I just got lucky. I
was able to get a little break and get a good shot off.”
The Ducks captain, Niedermayer chastised himself for the play.
“The guy was coming at me pretty good and I made a bad decision
with the puck,” Niedermayer said. “You’re not going to be able
to make a cross ice pass like that with their guy sitting in
position waiting for it. You make the mistake and it’s right in
“We just didn’t react well to their forecheck. Those are a
couple bad decisions with the puck. When a team’s trapping like
that, the safest play is up the boards and we chose not to it
and paid the price.”
Lundqvist said it was nice to see the Rangers captain score.
“(Drury’s) doing so many other good things out there that you
don’t really focus on whether he’s scoring or not,” Lundqvist
said. “But for him, it’s a good feeling to score once in a
while, and it was a nice one, too. This was probably one of our
better games this year from start to finish. I’m pretty
impressed with the guys.”
Zherdev was awarded his 11th goal of the campaign with one
second remaining in the contest when he was taken down on a
breakaway while facing an empty net.
The Ducks tied the game late in the second period when Lundqvist
used his glove to knock away Ryan Carter’s shot, causing a
scramble in front of the net. Lunqvist batted away the rebound
by defenseman Bret Hedican before Kunitz found a loose puck and
scored into an empty left side with 90 ticks left in the