Sharks fall to Rangers 3-2 in overtime
NEW YORK — Brady Skjei used overtime to redeem an earlier mistake and give Rangers coach David Quinn his first NHL victory.
Skjei buried a wrist shot 37 seconds into overtime to lift New York over the San Jose Sharks 3-2 on Thursday night.
“With three-on-three and his skating he’s going to be a threat,” Quinn said of Skjei. “It was a heck of a goal, that’s for sure.”
Marcus Sorensen beat Skjei on his way to a short-handed goal for San Jose in the first period. Sorenson worked around Skjei with a nifty move and snapped a shot past Henrik Lundqvist’s glove at 4:31.
That had Skjei looking to make amends.
“You want to play with urgency all the time,” Skjei said. “We knew we needed to get one here quick. We did. Now we are ready to move on to Saturday.”
New York’s Brendan Smith tied it at 2 with 2:39 remaining in the third with a one-timer from the slot. Pavel Buchnevich set it up with a backhand pass from behind the net.
Aaron Dell made 24 saves and Brent Burns had two assists for the Sharks. Joonas Donskoi also scored in San Jose’s third stop of a four-game trip.
Lundqvist stopped 41 shots and Brett Howden also scored for the Rangers.
Howden had a highlight-reel goal to even the score at 1 at 13:52 of the opening period when he put the puck between his legs and then Dell’s legs. The rookie moved up the depth chart prior to the game and skated alongside Chris Kreider and Mats Zuccarello.
New York acquired Howden from the Tampa Bay Lightning at last year’s trade deadline as part of a package for defenseman Ryan McDonagh.
“He’s impressed me since the first time I met him when training camp started,” Quinn said of the rookie. “I am not surprised by what he’s doing and how much confidence he’s gained from game to game. There’s no nonsense to his game in addition to having great skill. That’s a big component to having success at this level.”
Burns helped the Sharks take a 2-1 lead at 4:59 of the second when he cleared the puck from his own end, setting up an odd-man rush. Antti Suomela delivered a perfect cross-ice pass to set up a tap-in for Donskoi.
“I think it is pretty clear that we played a good hockey game,” Sharks coach Peter DeBoer said. “We didn’t give them much and I thought we created a lot. You have to tip your hat to Lundqvist, great goalie and that was a great effort by him to keep them in it through forty minutes.”
Quinn became the second coach in Rangers history to join the franchise with NCAA experience, along with Herb Brooks.