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Rangers advance with convincing Game 7 win vs. Hurricanes

Rangers Hurricanes Game 7

RALEIGH, NORTH CAROLINA - MAY 30: Chris Kreider #20 of the New York Rangers reacts with his teammates following a third period goal in Game Seven of the Second Round of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena on May 30, 2022 in Raleigh, North Carolina. (Photo by Jared C. Tilton/Getty Images)

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The good news for the Carolina Hurricanes: no more of that home/road talk. The bad news: it’s because the Rangers just eliminated them from the playoffs, in Carolina, beating the Hurricanes 6-2 in Game 7.

With that result, the Rangers face a well-rested Tampa Bay Lightning team in the 2022 Eastern Conference Final. Game 1 (8 p.m. ET) will take place at Madison Square Garden on Wednesday.

Over their previous seven home playoff games, Carolina gave up just eight goals. In Game 7 against the Rangers, the Hurricanes yielded six. (Take out the empty-netter, and it remains stunning.)

Igor Shesterkin didn’t get a shutout, yet he was a huge difference-maker early on, never really letting the Canes in this one.

Rangers add to Game 7 history, the wrong patterns break for Hurricanes

The Rangers handed the Hurricanes their first Game 7 loss since moving to North Carolina. Previously, the Hurricanes won their last six Game 7s; the Rangers have now won eight of their last nine Game 7s.

Many of the wrong type of patterns ended for the Canes.

They were the first team in NHL postseason history to begin the playoffs with the home team winning the first 13 playoff games. At the most inopportune time, that run ended.

Speaking of patterns not breaking the Hurricanes’ way in Game 7, the Rangers continue to be a devil to eliminate. New York rallied from a 3-1 series deficit against the Penguins in the First Round, and were down 3-2 to Carolina in this series.

Rangers get off to a hot start against Hurricanes in Game 7

Sometimes, you’re lucky to get a power play or two for an entire Game 7. You know, when officials “let them play” (*whispers* let them cheat).

Game 7 of Hurricanes - Rangers did not begin that way. Both teams received two power-play opportunities, and each enjoyed very different results.

Continuing talk of patterns maintaining mainly when it was bad for the Hurricanes, Adam Fox scored in the dying stages of an early power play, making it five straight games where the Rangers scored a first-period PPG.

It wouldn’t be the only Rangers power-play goal from the opening frame.

In a key sequence, Seth Jarvis ended up injured by a hard Jacob Trouba hit. He would not be able to return. Jarvis struggled to get off the ice, and the Hurricanes ended up taking a too many men on the ice penalty. Trouba wasn’t penalized, so the Rangers went on another power play.

They did not take log to cash in, as Chris Kreider deftly deflected a great Mika Zibanejad shot-pass.

Things never really got better for Carolina in second or third

Once the smoke cleared on the second period, the Rangers were the only team who scored.

To make matters even worse, the Rangers scored that goal ... one of the two shots Pyotr Kochetkov faced. That’s right, the Hurricanes’ goalie injuries continued, as Antti Raanta left Game 7 late in the second. Raanta would not return.

It’s fair to note that the Rangers faced the Penguins, who were eventually without both Tristan Jarry and Casey DeSmith. One round later, Frederik Andersen never played, and Raanta’s dealt with some issues.

(Tip to Lightning: encase Andrei Vasilevskiy in bubble wrap.)

A few minutes into the third period of Game 7, the Hurricanes couldn’t really get much of a rally going. ESPN’s telecast noted that Carolina only rallied from one 3+ goal deficit during the regular season.

As Carolina was pressing, Frank Vatrano broke out Chris Kreider for a splendid 4-0 breakaway goal.

From the “too little, too late” file, the Hurricanes scored a power-play goal 8:11 through the third. To really hammer home how faint that push was, Filip Chytil made it 5-1 just 40 seconds later.

In the late stages, Max Domi scored a garbage goal, and Andrew Copp made it 6-2 to wrap everything up.

An overview of the Rangers - Hurricanes series as it reaches Game 7

2022 NHL playoff schedule: Eastern Conference Final


Game 1 - June 1: Lightning at Rangers, 8 p.m. ET (ESPN, SN, CBC, TVAS)
Game 2 - June 3: Lightning at Rangers, 8 p.m. ET (ESPN, SN, CBC, TVAS)
Game 3 - June 5: Rangers at Lightning, 3 p.m. ET (ESPN, SN, CBC, TVAS)
Game 4 - June 7: Rangers at Lightning, 8 p.m. ET (ESPN, SN, CBC, TVAS)
*Game 5 - June 9: Lightning at Rangers, 8 p.m. ET, (ESPN, SN, CBC, TVAS)
*Game 6 - June 11: Rangers at Lightning, 8 p.m. ET, (ESPN, SN, CBC, TVAS)
*Game 7 - June 14: Lightning at Rangers, 8 p.m. ET, (ESPN, SN, CBC, TVAS)

* If necessary