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Rangers Rebound With 5-2 Win Over Flyers

Hayes, Grabner score twice; Lundqvist makes 30 saves in victory

by Matt Calamia @MattCalamia /

What a difference 24 hours made for the Rangers, who rebounded from a disappointing effort Tuesday to turn in a complete team effort in a 5-2 victory over the Flyers in Philadelphia Wednesday night.

Kevin Hayes and Michael Grabner each scored twice while Henrik Lundqvist turned in a stellar performance in making 30 saves for his 17th victory of the season.

"This group knows how to prepare and they know how to compete," head coach Alain Vigneault said. "There's no doubt that they knew last night was way below our expectations, individually and collectively. They came tonight and they prepared and competed and played a real strong game."

Video: NYR@PHI: Hayes shows off wheels, nets opening goal

After a scoreless first period, New York would open the scoring on Hayes' first of the night when he broke in on a 2-on-1 and went forehand to backhand and beat Steve Mason 2:08 into the middle frame.

The goal snapped a 12-game scoreless drought for Hayes. 

New York would blow the game open in the third period, starting with Chris Kreider's 16th of the season that made it 2-0 Rangers 5:01 into the third.

Video: NYR@PHI: Miller, Grabner combine to pad Rangers' lead

Grabner would extend the lead to 3-0 at 11:13 when he finished a pass from J.T. Miller on the side of the net into the open cage for his 15th of the year.

The assist extended Miller's point streak to four, which is a new career-best.

With the Rangers up 3-1, Hayes would net his second of the night in a similar fashion as his first. Hayes broke in on a 2-on-1 with Grabner and fired a wrist shot stick side through Mason to put the Rangers back up by three.

Hayes now has seven points in his last five games and 11 points in his last 14.

"No one was really happy about last night," Hayes said. "The first five minutes were a big key tonight. I thought once we got our legs under us it was good the rest of the game."

After Philadelphia scored again to trim the lead to 4-2, Grabner iced the game with an empty net goal with 2:15 to play.

Jakub Voracek scored both of the Flyers' goals.

While the offense eventually did its job, it was Lundqvist who did his early. With the game scoreless, Lundqvist stopped Wayne Simmonds on a breakaway and was sensational on the ensuing penalty kill after Ryan McDonagh was called for slashing Simmonds.

Video: NYR@PHI: Lundqvist dives to corral Schenn's shot

Lundqvist's best saves of the night came in the second after the Rangers took a 1-0 lead when he stopped Brayden Schenn twice, first from the slot and for a second time on the rebound.

"I felt like I competed really well," Lundqvist said. "It's fun when we're all engaged. You could sense it. It started in the first period and even the second and third. Everyone is working hard, blocking shots and trying to do the right thing against a good team. As a goalie, you want to respond and be there."

Lundqvist's dominance of the Flyers continued as he is now 19-3-1 against Philadelphia dating back to March 6, 2011.

The Rangers are now 12-1-1 this season in games following a loss and a 7-0-0 in the second game of a back-to-back set.

With Tuesday's performance leaving every Ranger with something to be desired, Lundqvist said a performance like this was crucial with another big division matchup slated for Saturday in Columbus.

"We all felt the importance of this game," he said. "The way things happened last night, we wanted to come back with a really solid performance and we got one."

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