It was a slow start by the New York Rangers Saturday night against the Toronto Maple Leafs, but the Blueshirts scored a total of five goals in the second and third periods to take home a 5-2 victory at Madison Square Garden.
They improved their record to 2-3-0 with the win, while Toronto falls to 2-3-0 with the loss.
New York outplayed Toronto throughout the game, but despite having a 14-3 advantage in shots at the conclusion of the first period, the Maple Leafs had a 2-0 lead.
"We played great. It was a miracle they were up 2-0 after that (first) period," Henrik Lundqvist said. "It was definitely frustrating to sit in here. The feeling is even better now knowing that we stayed patient and made good decisions even though we were behind.
"Everybody who watched the game thought we should be up two goals, at least, but that was not the case."
James Reimer played great in net for the Maple Leafs, stopping shot after shot until the Rangers got rolling in the third period.
With the team down 2-1, after Brad Richards' rebound goal on an empty net, Marc Staal tallied his first goal of the season in the third period. The Rangers executed a great play into the zone with Michael Del Zotto finding Marian Gaborik down low, who hit Staal wide open in the slot for the goal.
From then on, the Rangers carried the momentum and added a few more goals for assurance of the win.
"We were hanging on and hanging on, but they kept coming and broke us," captain Dion Phaneuf said of the Rangers. "Reims played great. We hung him out."
About five minutes after the equalizer, Staal took a shot from the point that got deflected by Gaborik, and the puck went past the netminder Reimer. Gaborik came from behind the net as Staal unleashed the laser, and altered the shot just enough to beat Reimer.
A few minutes after that goal, the Rangers really put the game out of reach. Del Zotto took a shot from the point that was blocked by a Toronto forward. He remaining composed after the shot was blocked and unloaded another on net that hit Brian Boyle and found its way into the back of the net. The goal was credited to Boyle, for his first of the year. About a minute later, Gaborik netted his fifth goal of the young season on an empty net, making it a 5-2 game.
Head coach John Tortorella was pleased with the team's performance.
"For 60 minutes, we played really well," Tortorella said. "We beat ourselves in the first with a couple of bad, bad mistakes. But it didn't bother us. We continued to play."
Just before the game, the team signed veteran center Jason Arnott. The 38-year-old had 17 goals and 17 assists last season with the St. Louis Blues, and he signed a one-year $1.6 million deal with New York pending a physical, which is set to be taken today.
Rookie Chris Kreider missed Saturday's game with a bone-chip in his ankle, revealed by an MRI he underwent Friday. It is not immediately clear how severe the injury is or how long he will be sidelined.Tags: Brad Richards, Brian Boyle, Chris Kreider, Henrik Lundqvist, Hockey, James Reimer, Jason Arnott, John Tortorella, Marc Staal, Marian Gaborik, Michael Del Zotto, New York, New York Rangers, NHL, Toronto Maple Leafs