The overarching theme of the Rangers’ sport towards the Avalanche on Tuesday night time was at all times going to be goaltending. In a 3-2 shootout loss to Colorado, nonetheless, a uncommon gaffe from the Blueshirts’ star goaltender, Igor Shesterkin, practically stole the present.
Shesterkin skated out to aggressively play the puck together with his workforce shorthanded, as he has many instances earlier than, however the netminder mishandled it whereas absorbing a tough forecheck from Colorado ahead Andrew Cogliano. Before Shesterkin may get set, Cogliano fed Logan O’Connor, who scored to put the Avalanche up 2-1 simply 59 seconds into the third interval.
Pausing in what appeared to be disbelief, Shesterkin simply regarded down on the ice. The Rangers have been in a position to even the rating and pressure additional time behind Adam Fox’s third-period goal earlier than Colorado ahead Evan Rodrigues received it for his workforce within the shootout.
“One goalie saved a shot; the other one missed a shot,” Shesterkin stated via an interpreter after the loss. “That’s the difference.”
Shesterkin has been lauded by his teammates for his particular ability in dealing with the puck, however contemplating how a lot he does it and the danger it at all times entails, such a play was certain to occur sooner or later.
In the shootout, after ahead Nathan MacKinnon missed on Colorado’s first shootout try, Shesterkin made the save on defenseman Cale Makar. Mikko Rantanen and Rodrigues then every scored to give the Avalanche the successful margin.
Shesterkin completed with 42 saves on 44 pictures, together with 5 saves towards Colorado’s deadly energy play.
“He made one mistake in two years,” Rangers coach Gerard Gallant stated with a smile. “I didn’t even see what happened to be honest. I just seen he had the puck in the corner, I have no idea. It happens, we get by it and get over it.”
There was a weird second on the finish of the primary interval, when Alexis Lafreniere was known as for high-sticking Makar within the face. Replays confirmed it was clearly the stick of Colorado defenseman Devon Toews that hit Makar, however since solely double-minor calls could be reviewed, the wrong infraction stood.
The Rangers have been in a position to kill off the head-scratching penalty.
“He’s got no choice, he’s got to make the call,” Gallant stated. “It’s disappointing and frustrating, but he made the right call.”
Defenseman Libor Hajek performed in simply his second sport of the season, changing Zac Jones on the underside pair alongside Braden Schneider. Jones, who had a tricky sport throughout a loss to the Blue Jackets on Sunday, was a wholesome scratch.