Hurricanes’ 4-goal third period forces Game 6 vs. Rangers

Evgeny Kuznetsov scored the tiebreaking goal with 13:21 remaining in the third period as the Carolina Hurricanes staved off elimination by rallying for a 4-1 victory over the New York Rangers in Game 5 on Monday night.

The Rangers lead their Eastern Conference second-round series 3-2 with Game 6 on Thursday in Raleigh, N.C. If the Hurricanes can extend the series again, Game 7 will be on Saturday in New York.

Carolina earned its second postseason win over the Rangers in New York in seven tries by getting two goals in the first 6:39 of the third.

Jordan Staal made a slick move for the tying goal 3:33 into the third, then Kuznetsov gave the Hurricanes a 2-1 lead by being in the right place at the right time.

After clearing the defensive zone, Kuznetsov sped down the left wing and moved the puck to Jesperi Kotkaniemi. Kotkaniemi made a cross-ice pass to Brady Skjei, whose shot from above the right circle was stopped by Igor Shesterkin.

Shesterkin was unable to cover the puck to create a faceoff and the rebound popped out to the slot, where Kuznetsov easily converted the rebound by getting around Artemi Panarin.

Jordan Martinook added an insurance goal 3:15 after Kuznetsov scored. Martin Necas finished it off by scoring into an empty net with 3:29 left.

After struggling in the first two games of the series, Carolina goalie Frederik Andersen made 20 saves for his second straight victory.

Captain Jacob Trouba scored a short-handed goal in the second period but the Rangers rarely generated consistent offense and struggled during their power plays, finishing 0-for-3.

Shesterkin stopped 24 shots.

At 6:23 of the second period, Trouba scored New York’s fourth short-handed goal of the postseason and his first career short-handed postseason tally by making a strong defensive play and finishing it off.

During a tripping penalty to Roslovic, Trouba blocked a shot by Sebastian Aho in the left circle and gained possession. Upon gaining possession, Trouba easily sped down the left wing, faked a shot, and when Skjei did not defend, the New York captain released a shot from the left circle on a two-on-one that sailed over Andersen’s right shoulder.

Staal stunned the crowd by making a slick move around New York defenseman Braden Schneider to cut in front of the crease and then finished the sequence by putting a backhander by Shesterkin.

After Kuznetsov’s goal, Martinook made it 3-1 by cashing on a New York turnover behind the net. Jack Drury made a pass from behind the net to Martinook, who ripped a shot from between the circles over Shesterkin.