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Lundqvist, Spooner Lead Rangers to Second Straight Win in Calgary

by Matt Calamia @MattCalamia /

CALGARY -- There are hot streaks and there are streaks like the one Ryan Spooner is on.

Spooner, acquired last weekend's in a trade with the Bruins, scored his first goal as a Blueshirt and added an assist to give him seven points in three games.

"I thought my game tonight, actually, didn't think it was that good," he said. "I thought I had some plays I could have been better on, but as a whole I just tried to help out and I got a break there on the breakaway and that play on the faceoff."

Those plays Spooner is referencing started in the first period when he fired a shot on goal right off the faceoff that Kevin Hayes eventually buried the rebound 4:07 into the contest. The goal was Hayes' 18th of the year, which set a new career-high.

Spooner's tally came on a breakaway at 10:48 of the second after Tony DeAngelo hit the speedy forward with a pass from inside the Rangers' zone to Spooner, who was stationed at Calgary's blueline. 

Spooner went back into the memory bank for his move, having been burned in Calgary earlier this season on a previous breakaway opportunity.

"Most of the time on a breakaway I like to go five-hole," he said. "The last time I played in here I got a breakaway and I tried to go glove and it didn't work out for me. Just glad that it went in."

Video: NYR@CGY: Spooner nets first goal with the Rangers

After Calgary tied it late in the first, New York regained the one-goal advantage on Pavel Buchnevich's 14th goal of the year 56 seconds into the middle frame, which held up as the game-winner.

Spooner's two-point night made him the first Ranger since Carey Wilson in 1988-89 to record at least seven points in his first three games with the club.

If the ways to describe Spooner's success over the last two games are beginning to run out, the same could be said for Henrik Lundqvist, who for the second time in as many games made 50 saves, and none were better than his stop on Mikael Backlund with his blocker that came moments before Buchnevich's goal.

"I just realized if I'm going to reach over there to let go of my stick," he said. "It felt pretty good to make the save and then we score 20, 30 seconds later."

Video: NYR@CGY: Lundqvist robs Backlund with amazing save

The timing of the save was just as important as the save itself.

"It was definitely a turning point in the game," coach Alain Vigneault said. "He makes that save and we come right back and score. We got great goaltending tonight and got a win out of it."

Lundqvist, who became the first goaltender in NHL history to make 50 saves and win in two consecutive games since the stat began getting tracked in 1955-56, said the increased workload is fine with him as long as the wins keep coming.

"When you win, yeah," Lundqvist said when asked if he enjoyed facing that much rubber. "It comes down to winning. You want to feel like you're making a difference out there. When you're not - that's why I'm here. I want to make a difference. I want to help the team to win games."

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