The New Jersey Devils made a statement in Game 4, dominating a New York Rangers team hoping to go up three games to one in the series. However, the Devils were hungrier and played the better overall game.
New Jersey Devils goaltender Akira Schmid, making his second straight start, made 22 saves and allowed just one goal. New York Rangers forward Chris Kreider, who came into the game with four goals, only managed an assist on the Rangers’ only goal.
The New Jersey Devils opened the scoring in the first three minutes of the game. Devils forward Jack Hughes scored on a breakaway from just inside the Rangers’ line. He made a small move in front of the net and beat Rangers goaltender Igor Shesterkin.
The New Jersey Devils frustrated the New York Rangers in Game 4.
New Jersey Devils defenseman Jonas Siegenthaler got the only assist on the play. That would be the only goal scored in the period as both teams were stingy on defense and did not allow much of anything.
The Rangers would hold the shot advantage 10-8. Although the Rangers did not have many shots, Schmid had to make some outstanding and timely saves to keep the New Jersey Devils in the lead.
The Rangers and Devils were a combined 0-for-5 on the power play due to the smothering defensive play that both teams put forward. The first period had a playoff atmosphere to it, with tight checking and not a lot of scoring chances.
The second period began with the New Jersey Devils leading 1-0 on a breakaway goal by Hughes. Period two would see no change on the scoreboard as the score remained 1-0 Devils and both teams provided the playoff atmosphere we expected.
A combined 34 hits, 27 blocked shots, and 14 takeaways were some stats that kept the game fun despite the lack of scoring. The scoring was not there in the second period, but the chances were and so was the defense.
Schmid and Shesterkin were playing solid hockey between the pipes, giving little room to the opposition. For a period that had no scoring, the defense and goaltending provided an intense period of hockey.
The shots were 8-6 in favor of the Devils, and the shots were even at 16 after two periods.
The third period started with both teams hoping for a little more room in the offensive zone. The New York Rangers would get on the board first, as center Vincent Trocheck scored for the Rangers at the 1:42 mark with assists going to Kreider and Patrick Kane.
The New Jersey Devils would answer about 10 minutes later as Siegenthaler would score his first of the playoffs and the eventual game-winner. Nico Hischier and Dougie Hamilton assisted on the goal.
Devils forward Ondrej Palat would seal the game for the Devils as he scored with 26 seconds left in the third. Jesper Bratt and Erik Haula assisted on the goal. The Devils and Rangers had seven shots a piece and would each have 23 shots in the game.
After losing two in New Jersey, the Devils have taken two in New York to tie the series at two.