The New York Rangers and Philadelphia Flyers were feeling each other out for the first two periods of Game 1 of their Eastern Conference quarterfinals matchup. Then the third period happened and the Rangers just turned their game to a different level.
The Rangers had more goals in the third period, three, than the Flyers had shots, one. Let that sink in for a second. Two power play goals by Brad Richards and Derek Stepan gave the Rangers a 3-1 lead. Carl Hagelin scored the insurance goal and Mats Zuccarello got the scoring started in the first.
Clearly, Alain Vigneault gave a rousing speech between the second and third period because the Rangers dominated the Flyers. They were quicker to loose pucks, more disciplined and got better goaltending. The power play was excellent for the Rangers, as was Richards. He led the Rangers with three points, all in the third period.
The Rangers played their game and that is why they were able to get the win in game one. They are a smarter team than the Flyers and rely heavily on their skilled players. In order for the Flyers to make this a series, they have to be more disciplined. When they are playing well, they dominate the third period just like they did tonight.
Rangers fan should definitely be happy about this victory. The Rangers came out fired up in the third period and that was the main reason they won this game.