The New York Rangers rolled to their season-high sixth straight victory on Saturday, and the line of Barclay Goodrow, Mika Zibanejad and Artemi Panarin played a major role.
Panarin and Goodrow each scored and set up a goal, and Zibanejad notched two assists in a 6-3 win at Philadelphia.
The trio hopes to keep clicking on Sunday night as the Rangers visit the reeling Chicago Blackhawks.
Goodrow called Panarin and Zibanejad “two elite players, not only on our team but throughout the league.”
“The more we play together, the more chemistry we’re gonna build,” Goodrow said.
Defenseman K’Andre Miller also had a goal and assist for the Rangers, while Jimmy Vesey scored for the second straight game. Vesey had a pair of goals in Thursday’s 3-1 home victory against Toronto.
“Every single day, every single game, we want to play our game,” Zibanejad said. “It’s a fast-paced game. We want to support each other. We’re good on the forecheck, so in terms of that, that’s what we’ve done these games, and some games more than others. We’ve just got to keep going.
“We all have an understanding here (of) what we have to do to be successful, and what’s been making us successful these past few games.”
The Blackhawks, meanwhile, continue to struggle. Friday’s 4-1 road loss to Minnesota marked Chicago’s sixth straight defeat, a stretch in which the Blackhawks have been outscored 24-6.
Chicago is 1-13-1 over its past 15 games and 3-16-4 over the past 23.
“No one wants to lose,” Blackhawks forward Max Domi said. “We certainly don’t. It’s not fun, and we got to stick together because that’s the only way we’re going to get out of this. I thought we showed glimpses of that (Friday).
“Guys are getting sick and tired of losing. We just got to find a way to push back now.”
Slow starts have loomed as a consistent culprit throughout the season. The Blackhawks have allowed opponents to score first in 24 of 29 games this season.
Captain Jonathan Toews netted his 10th goal of the season while winning 16 of 21 faceoffs.
“Everybody wants to win in this league, so I think we have to understand where our team is playing at right now,” Blackhawks coach Luke Richardson said. “It’s starting to come back together. … The last two games, much better. But still got to go up to win in this league.”
Chicago posted a 5-2 road victory against the Rangers on Dec. 3. Domi collected two goals and an assist in that contest, and Patrick Kane scored a goal and set up two others.
The Blackhawks snapped a four-game losing streak in the series.
Panarin had two assists in that contest for the Rangers, giving him six goals and eight assists in eight games against his former club.
–Field Level Media