Rangers beat Hurricanes to cut series deficit to 2-1

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Igor Shesterkin made 43 saves and the host New York Rangers held on for a 3-1 win over the Carolina Hurricanes on Sunday afternoon in Game 3 of their second-round series of the Eastern Conference.

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Rangers drew within 2-1 in the best of seven series and have a chance to tie the series on Tuesday.

Mika Zibanejad scored a power-play goal in the first period and set up Chris Kreider’s 30th career playoff goal in the second period as the Rangers won their fourth straight playoff home game after scoring once in of the first two games of the series. Tyler Motte added an empty-netter with 83 seconds left as Rangers survived by committing 35 giveaways.

Nino Niederreiter scored in second for Carolina, which is 0-4 on the road in this year’s playoffs.

After the horn honked, Carolina’s Max Domi hit New York defenseman Ryan Lindgren with his stick and the two players struggled on the ice.

Shesterkin withstood an early barrage as Carolina took the game’s first seven shots and 13 of the first 15. He also made seven saves on three powerplays for Carolina, including a power play with 6:03 left in the third.

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Zibanejad gave Rangers a 1-0 lead with 8:06 to go when he waited for a long cross pass from Artemi Panarin and snatched a one-timer from the left circle over defender Brett Pesce’s stick and in the right side of the net.

Zibanejad’s goal came about a minute before Shesterkin made a diving glove save on Jesperi Kotkaniemi. Carolina nearly tied the game with 16:50 left in the second when Shesterkin stopped Domi and Brendan Smith, but let the puck loose in the slot before Kevin Rooney got the loose puck to prevent the Hurricanes from taking the rebound .

With 14:05 remaining, Kreider gave Rangers a two-goal lead when he came out from behind the net and fired a shot from the bottom of the right circle over Raanta’s right arm. The play came moments after Zibanejad knocked down Carolina defenseman Tony DeAngelo’s stick.

Carolina made it 2-1 when Niederreiter’s backhand from the right circle escaped Shesterkin with 11:42 to go, but Motte scored after forcing a giveaway near the neutral zone.

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