May 23, 2012; New York, NY, USA; New Jersey Devils celebrate after winning the game against the New York Rangers in game five of the 2012 Eastern Conference Finals at Madison Square Garden. Devils won 5-3. Mandatory Credit: Debby Wong-US PRESSWIRE

A Day in the NHL, Chase for the Cup: Devils Hot Start Puts Rangers on Brink


The Night that Was

In a pivotal Game 5, the New Jersey Devils longed to make an impact against their rival New York Rangers in MSG. Few knew the impact would come so early. Just 2:43 in, Stephen Gionta scored his third of the playoffs to give the Devils a 1-0 lead, which was soon followed by Patrick Elias’ fourth, and Travis Zajac’s seventh of the playoffs to give the Devils a 3-0 lead before the first was 10 minutes old. It took the first of the playoffs from the returning Brandon Prust to get the Rangers on the board, as Martin Brodeur guessed wrong on the poke-check, and we went to the second on a two-goal differential. The Rangers would continue to chip away as Ryan Callahan scored the only goal of the second, and Marian Gaborik opened the scoring in the third as Brodeur mis-handled a loose puck, tying things up at 3. But the Devils kept coming and working hard, and after winning a battle in the corner, Ryan Carter was fed in front of Henrik Lundqvist and banged home the 4-3 goal. Zach Parise would add an empty-netter to give the Devils a 5-3 win and a 3-2 series lead. Parise, Gionta, Mark Fayne, and Ilya Kovalchuk would all finish the night with two points.

New Jersey Devils 5 vs New York Rangers 3 – Devils lead series 3-2

What’s on Tonight

With the LA Kings awaiting their Stanley Cup Finals opponent, there’s no hockey until Friday. Game 6 goes in New Jersey between the Devils and Rangers at 8pm Eastern.

Injury Bug

Bradon Dubinsky played last night for the New York Rangers, but Mats Zuccarello did not. Dubinsky recorded an assist and a -1 rating injust over 15 minutes of ice time.

New and Notes

Alain Vigneault will have an opportunity to lead the Vancouver Canucks back to the Stanley Cup Final as the two sides came to an agreement on a new two-year contract. He has been with Vancouver since the 2006/07 season.

The Minnesota Wild will hopefully have highly touted prospect Mikael Granlund in the lineup next year. The two sides came to an agreement on Grandlund’s entry-level contract yesterday. Granlund had decided not to sign until yesterday so he could finish school and complete his military obligation.

Derek Dorsett and the Columbus Blue Jackets have come to an agreement on a new three-year cotnract.

Luke Richardson has spent the last three seasons as an Assistant Coach, but next year he will have a chance to be a Head Coach. The Ottawa Senators announced that Richardson has been named the Head Coach of their AHL affiliate (Binghamton).

Your Playoff 3 Stars

1. Stephen Gionta, F – NJ: 1 G, 1 A, +1,

2. Ryan Carter, F – NJ: 1 G, 1 GWG, +2

3. Ryan Callahan, F – NYR: 1 G, -1 1 SOG

Tags: New Jersey Devils New York Rangers