The New York Rangers' 15-game string of one-goal NHL playoff games dating back to last spring is over. So is their one-game lead in this year’s Eastern Conference Final.
Tyler Johnson tallied the first hat trick in team history, and Alex Killorn (Harvard) scored two goals and set up another as the Tampa Bay Lightning tied their Stanley Cup Playoff series with a 6-2 win at Madison Square Garden on Monday night.
Montreal native Killorn, a four-year letterman and a 109-point scorer with the Crimson from 2008 to 2012, set up Johnson’s first goal, a shorthanded marker. He then scored on both of his own shots, both in the third period, the latter on a power play to close out the scoring as the Lightning finished 3-for-6 with the man advantage.
Ben Bishop (Maine) made 35 saves as the Lightning took leads of 1-0, 2-1, and 3-2 through the first 40 minutes before scoring three unanswered goals in the final frame. The Rangers outshot Tampa Bay, 37-26, on the night.
Chris Kreider (Boston College) and Derek Stepan (Wisconsin) lit the lamp for New York, both on the power play, while former Lightning skaters Martin St. Louis (Vermont) and Dan Boyle (Miami) assisted on both goals. The loss also snapped the Rangers' four-game winning streak that dated back to Game 5 of their Eastern Conference semifinal series with the Washington Capitals, which New York ultimately won in seven games.
Game 3 will played Wednesday night at Amalie Arena in Tampa, with Game 4 to follow in Florida on Friday.