Home Team in Caps
NY RANGERS 2, Tampa Bay 1 – NYR leads series 1-0
MOORE'S LATE HEROICS POWER RANGERS TO 1-0 LEAD IN EASTERN CONFERENCE FINAL
Tampa Bay Lightning forward Ondrej Palat tied the game at 6:45 of the third period, but Dominic Moore scored the go-ahead goal with 2:25 remaining in regulation to lift the New York Rangers to a 1-0 series lead in the Eastern Conference Final.
* Moore, who played with the Lightning from 2010-12, scored his first goal of the postseason (13 GP). His last goal was also a game-winner, on April 11 at the Washington Capitals in New York’s regular-season finale (4-2 W).
* Moore has four career playoff game-winning goals, three in the past two years, in 82 postseason games. He has 11 in the regular season (685 GP), including the first of his career (regular season and playoffs) at Tampa Bay on Nov. 10, 2005, as a rookie with the Rangers.
* Henrik Lundqvist made 23 saves, including 12 in the second period, and allowed only one goal for the eighth time this postseason (13 GP); he is 7-1 in those games. Lundqvist has won each of his last four games and leads all remaining goaltenders with a 1.56 goals-against average and .945 save percentage in the playoffs.
* Overall, Lundqvist has allowed one or fewer goals in 20 of 31 career playoff victories at Madison Square Garden (1.27 GAA, .954 SV%, 5 SO). That includes 10 of 13 playoff wins at hone in the last two years.
* Lundqvist also improved to 6-1 with a 1.14 goals-against average and .951 save percentage in seven career Game 1s at Madison Square Garden (all since 2012 EQF vs. the Ottawa Senators).
* Derek Stepan opened the scoring with his second goal in as many games, following his series-clinching tally at 11:24 of overtime in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Second Round vs. Washington. He has 2-3—5 on a four-game point streak and 4-5—9 overall this postseason.
* Stepan has 6-9—15 in 17 career regular-season games against the Lightning, but Saturday marked the first time he scored a goal against Tampa Bay since Feb. 28, 2013.
* The Rangers defeated the Lightning for the first time in 2014-15 (regular season and playoffs), snapping a four-game skid dating to Jan. 14, 2014 (NYR: 0-4-0). It also marked their first head-to-head victory against the Lightning at Madison Square Garden since Feb. 28, 2013 (0-3-0 since).
* The Rangers improved to 6-2 when scoring first this postseason. They owned the most wins (41) and third-best winning percentage (.820) when scoring first during the regular season.
EVERY MINUTE COUNTS
Derek Stepan scored the first goal of the Eastern Conference Final with 12.7 seconds left in the second period of Game 1, marking the third time this postseason that the Rangers scored in the final minute of a period. Rick Nash did it at 19:54 of the third period in Game 2 vs. the Pittsburgh Penguins) and Chris Kreider at 19:59 of the first period in Game 6 at Washington).
* The Rangers have scored seven goals in either the opening or closing minute of a period in the 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs, including three such tallies in Game 6 of the second round at Washington.
NYR Goals Scored in Opening or Closing Minute of a Period, 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs
Derick Brassard: 0:28 of the first period in Game 1 vs. Pittsburgh on April 16
Rick Nash: 19:54 of the third period in Game 2 vs. Pittsburgh on April 18
Chris Kreider: 0:38 of the first period in Game 2 vs. Washington on May 2
Chris Kreider: 0:40 of the first period in Game 6 at Washington on May 10
Chris Kreider: 19:59 of the first period in Game 6 at Washington on May 10
Rick Nash: 0:54 of the third period in Game 6 at Washington on May 10
Derek Stepan: 19:47 of the second period in Game 1 vs. Tampa Bay on May 16
Each of the Rangers' 13 games this postseason has been decided by one goal. They have played 15 straight one-goal games dating to last year (since Game 4 of the Final vs. the Los Angeles Kings). It is the longest such streak in Stanley Cup Playoffs history.
* In addition, nine of 13 games (69.2%) played by the Rangers have ended in a 2-1 score. The Rangers have won seven of the nine games.
* In the first round vs. Pittsburgh, the Rangers earned each of their wins by a 2-1 score. Elias says it was only the third time that an NHL team has won a best-of-7 playoff series with each of its wins coming by the same score.
The Rangers have allowed two goals or fewer in 11 of 13 playoff games this year, including 10 of their past 11. . . . Lightning goaltender Ben Bishop lost to the Rangers for the first time in his career; he's now 8-1-0, regular season and playoffs. . . . Ondrej Palat scored Tampa Bay's lone goal, his third in the last four games. He has 4-5—9 in 14 playoff games this year. . . . Tyler Johnson (8-5—13) had an assist to move into a share of second in playoff scoring. He is tied with / Patrick Kane of the Chicago Blackhawks (7-6—13). . . . Ryan Callahan was credited with two hits, one blocked shot in 14:46 TOI in his return to the Lightning lineup after missing Game 6 of Tampa Bay's second-round series following an appendectomy. . . . ICYMI: The Stanley Cup was at the Charles M. Schulz Museum in Santa Rosa, Calif., in conjunction with the opening of a new exhibit, “Peanuts in the Penalty Box.”