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Rangers Classics Preview: Rangers vs. Capitals (4/17/86)

by Staff Writer / New York Rangers


Tune-in to MSG Network on Wednesday, March 9 at 8:00 PM ET as Rangers Classics, presented by Panasonic, looks back at the opening game of the 1986 Prince of Wales - Division Finals series between the Blueshirts and the Washington Capitals. Just two days earlier - on April 15 - New York completed an improbable upset win over the Philadelphia Flyers in the fifth and deciding game of the series to advance to face the Caps.

During the regular season, each team posted a 3-3-1 record in head-to-head matchups, although Washington held the decisive advantage in the overall Prince of Wales Conference standings. The Caps finished the season with a 50-23-7 mark, good for 107 points - only three behind the Flyers for the top record in the NHL. The Rangers, meanwhile, finished the regular season at 36-38-6.

Game One certainly went the distance ... and then some ... as the it took overtime to settle this tilt. Brian MacLellan (photo - right) tallied his second goal of the game 1:16 into the extra session to give the Blueshirts a 1-0 series lead. Mark Osborne and Mike Ridley also contributed offensively in the win, while John Vanbiesbrouck continued his playoff magic with a 27-save performance.

Be sure to tune-in to MSG Network on Wednesday, March 16 at 8:00 PM ET for Game Four of this Prince of Wales - Division Finals series.

RANGERS CLASSICS - PREVIOUS GAME PREVIEWS:
Rangers vs. Flyers - Game 5 (1986 Patrick Division Semifinals >>
Rangers vs. Flyers - Game 2 (1986 Patrick Division Semifinals >>

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Game 1 - BOX SCORE (Rangers vs. Capitals):

First Period: WSH 1 - Christian 2 (Murphy, Langway) 8:46; NYR 2 - MacLellan 1 (Brooke, Ruotsalainen) 11:48; WSH 3 - Gould 3 (Duchesne, Langway) 12:39. Pen - Maloney (NYR) 13:43; Allison (NYR) 16:46 Pettersson (WSH) 17:42.

Second Period: WSH 4 - Haworth 1 (Gartner, Smith) 6:39; NYR 5 - Osborne 2 (Miller) 17:33 (sh). Pen - Franceschetti (WSH) 1:38; Paiement (NYR), Adams (WSH) 5:21; Stevens (WSH) 10:28; Maloney (NYR), Barret (WSH) minors, majors, misconducts, 1:28 Sandstrom (NYR) 17:23.

Third Period: NYR 6 - Ridley 4 (Miller, Larouche) 9:37. Pen - Osbourne (NYR), Murphy (WSH) 11:23

Overtime: NYR 7 - MacLellan 2 (Sandstrom) 1:16. Pen - none.

Goaltending:
Peeters - WSH (L) 23/27
Vanbiesbrock - NYR (W) 27/30

Attendance:
18,130 (Capital Centre - Landover, Maryland)
(Rangers lead best of seven series 1-0)

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1985-86 FAST FACTS:
NYR General Manager: Phil Esposito
NYR Head Coach: Ted Sator
NYR Assistant Coaches: Jack Birch, Reg Higgs
NYR Regular Season Record: 36-38-6 (78 points / 4th Patrick Divison)
1985-85 Season Series vs. WSH: 3-3-1

RANGERS REGULAR SEASON LEADERS:
Goals: Tomas Sandstrom (25), Bob Brooke (24), Mike Ridley (22)
Assists: Mike Ridley (43), Reijo Ruotsalainen (42), Raimo Helminen (30)
Points: Mike Ridley (65), Reijo Ruotsalainen (59), Tomas Sandstrom (54)
Penalty Minutes: Bob Brooke (111), Tomas Sandstrom (109), Ron Greschner (104)
Wins: John Vanbiesbrouck (31), Glen Hanlon (5)
GAA: John Vanbiesbrouck (3.32), Glen Hanlon (3.33)
Save %: Glen Hanlon (.893), John Vanbiesbrouck (.887)

WSH General Manager: David Poile
WSH Head Coach: Bryan Murray
WSH Assistant Coaches: Terry Murray, Ron Lapointe
WSH Regular Season Record: 50-23-7 (107 points / 2nd Patrick Division)

WASHINGTON REGULAR SEASON LEADERS:
Goals: Dave Christian (41), Mike Gartner (35), Alan Haworth (34)
Assists: Bengt Gustafsson (52), Craig Laughlin (45), Larry Murphy (44)
Points: Dave Christian (83), Mike Gartner, Craig Laughlin, Bengt Gustafsson (75)
Penalty MInutes: Scott Stevens (165), Greg Adams (152), Lou Franceschetti (131)
Wins: Al Jensen (28), Pete Peters (19)
GAA: Al Jensen (3.18), Pete Peters (3.35)
Save %: Al Jensen (.889), Pete Peters (3.35), Pete Peters (.875)

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RANGERS CLASSIC PROFILE:
BRIAN MacLELLAN


BACKGROUND:
Made his NHL debut with the Los Angeles Kings in 1982-83, recording three assists in eight games after spending a mjsority of the season in New Haven of the American Hockey League ... MacLellan, who won a Stanley Cup with the Calgary Flames in 1989, had a 10-year NHL career in which he skated for the Los Angeles Kings, NewYork Rangers, Minnesota North Stars, Flames and Detroit Red Wings ... The Guelph, Ont., native played hockey at Bowling Green State University from 1978-82 ... Received his MBA in finance from the University of Minnesota in 1995 and went on to work for an investment consulting firm in Minneapolis before joining the Capitals as a pro scout ... Currently serves as Washington's Director of Player Personnel.

1985-86 NOTES:
Appeared in 51 games with the Rangers, his one and only season with the club ... Tallied 11 goals and 21 assists for 32 points, along with 47 penalty minutes during the regular season ... Collected six points (two goals, four assists) and 15 penalty minutes in 16 post-season matches during New York's run to the Conference Finals in 1986.

HOW HE BECAME A RANGER:
December 9, 1985 - Acquired by the Rangers from the Los Angeles Kings, along with a fourth round selection in the 1987 NHL Entry Draft (Michael Sullivan) in exchange for Roland Melanson and Grant Ledyard.
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