Motte double helps Canucks beat Rangers
Tyler Motte came up with a quick-fire double to help the Vancouver Canucks record a 4-1 victory over the New York Rangers at Rogers Arena on Wednesday night.
With the Canucks leading 1-0, Motte scored twice in the space of 11 seconds in the second period to give Vancouver a decisive lead and register his first NHL multi-goal game following a run of 17 games without scoring a point. Brock Boeser and Jake Virtanen got the other goals for Vancouver, while Jacob Markström finished with 21 saves.
For the Canucks, this was only their second regulation win in 18 games, and only their fifth win overall during that run. However, they remain a long way off the pace in the race for the second wild card spot in the Western Conference. They are eight points behind the Arizona Coyotes and a massive 27 points behind the Pacific Division leaders the San Jose Sharks, who are the narrow favourites with most sports betting companies to win the Division, ahead of the Calgary Flames.
The Rangers’ defeat means that they have now won just one time in the last nine, and they are now 12 points behind the Columbus Blue Jackets in the East, making them unlikely candidates to land the second wild card place, with only 12 games remaining of the regular season.
Boeser opened the scoring with a smart wrist-shot from the left face-off circle, following a backhand pass from Josh Leivo at 6:07 in the second. That goal came during a power play called when Chris Kreider was handed a major penalty for an elbow on Vancouver forward Elias Pettersson, and speaking after the game, Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist acknowledged that the second period was when they slipped out of contention:
“First period was really strong but then we had a stretch in the second period that it just changed the whole game for a while, that many penalty minutes. It also changed a little bit the way we played.”
Motte’s two-goal burst effectively settled the game. On 9:34, he cut inside and tapped a backhand past Lundqvist, and then on 9:45, he pounced on a rebound to hit a one-timer into the net. Pavel Buchnevich pulled a goal back for the Rangers, but Virtanen made it 4-1, scoring into an empty net with just 25 seconds remaining, to seal the game.
Words: Stijn Jansson