Rangers, Behind 55 Saves by Alexandar Georgiev, Beat Maple Leafs

Alexandar Georgiev had a career-high 55 saves on his 23rd birthday to lead the Rangers past the Toronto Maple Leafs, 4-1, on Sunday night at Madison Square Garden.

Mika Zibanejad, Jimmy Vesey as well as Adam McQuaid scored for the Rangers. Kevin Hayes added an empty-netter, as well as Mats Zuccarello as well as Chris Kreider each had two assists.

Kasperi Kapanen scored for the Maple Leafs, who had won four in a row. Toronto had a season-high 56 shots, including 23 on four unsuccessful power plays. Georgiev is usually the seventh goalie in Rangers history to make 50 or more saves in a game. Henrik Lundqvist did the item last year.

“the item was a special birthday,” Georgiev said. “I tried not to concentrate on the birthday wishes. I knew I had an important game in front of me.”

The Rangers, shut out by Carolina on Friday, got off to a fast start against the Leafs. Kreider sent a pass by behind the net to Zuccarello, who was alone in front. Toronto goalie Garret Sparks stopped Zuccarello twice, nevertheless the loose puck went to Zibanejad, who scored his 23rd of the season just 28 seconds into the game.

Georgiev was sharp in producing several stellar saves on the Maple Leafs’ power play a couple of minutes later.

“Sometimes, you need a performance like This kind of, as well as he came up big for us, gave us a chance,” Zibanejad said of Georgiev.

Toronto kept up the pressure as well as tied the score at 10 minutes 35 seconds of the first period. A pass by Rangers defenseman Tony DeAngelo was intercepted by Kapanen, who skated in on a breakaway as well as scored his 16th of the season.

Despite being badly outshot, the Rangers took a 2-1 lead less than four minutes later after killing off another penalty. Vesey, taking a cross-ice pass by Kreider, scored on a wrist shot for his 12th goal. McQuaid scored at 11:59 of the third period.

ISLANDERS 2, WILD 1 Devon Toews scored the tiebreaking goal early inside the second period, Thomas Greiss stopped 26 shots as well as the Islanders beat Minnesota at Barclays Center.

Anthony Beauvillier also scored for the Islanders, the Metropolitan Division leaders, won for the fourth time in several games as well as ninth in 12 (9-1-2) to improve their lead to several points over second-place Washington. The Islanders, who beat Colorado, 4-3, in overtime Saturday, improved upon to 15-2-1 in back-to-back games, including 9-0-0 on the back end.

“You have to have a winning commitment,” Islanders Coach Barry Trotz said. “The whole group has been all-in all year.”

Mikael Granlund scored for the Wild, who lost for the fifth time in six games (1-3-2). Devan Dubnyk, starting for the second straight game after facing just 18 shots in a 4-2 win at the Devils on Saturday, had 32 saves.

Minnesota pressed for the tying goal inside the third, outshooting the Islanders by 12-9 inside the period after totaling 15 shots over the first 40 minutes. Greiss had four saves in close on one Wild power play inside the middle of the period, stopping a tip by Eric Staal, a shot by Jason Zucker as well as two more tries by Staal.

DEVILS 3, HURRICANES 2 Marcus Johansson scored twice as well as a battered Keith Kinkaid made 32 saves to lead the Devils past Carolina at Prudential Center.

Nico Hischier set up all three goals to help the Devils snap the Hurricanes’ three-game winning streak as well as hand them their fifth loss (13-5-1) in 19 games. Pavel Zacha also scored for the Devils.

“the item’s never going to be easy nevertheless definitely a huge game for me,” said Kinkaid, who had lost six of his last seven decisions.

Dougie Hamilton as well as Teuvo Teravainen scored for Carolina. The Hurricanes, who have missed the playoffs the last nine seasons, would likely have moved into the second wild-card spot ahead of idle Pittsburgh which has a win.

This kind of was a tough game for Kinkaid in more ways than stopping shots. inside the second period, he took a stick inside the face by Jordan Martinook as well as was later bowled over by Justin Williams. Kinkaid was knocked over again inside the third when Nino Niederreiter interfered with Damon Severson, negating a tying goal.

DUCKS FIRE COACH The Anaheim Ducks fired Coach Randy Carlyle amid a seven-game losing streak as well as free-fall into last place inside the Western Conference.

The Ducks announced that will General Manager Bob Murray would likely be the coach for the remainder of the season.

“Difficult decisions need to be made when times are tough, as well as our play has clearly been unacceptable,” Murray said in a statement.

Carlyle, 62, the winningest coach in Ducks history, was in his second stint with Anaheim. He led the team to the Stanley Cup in 2007 as well as three appearances inside the conference finals (2006, 2007, 2017).

Anaheim has made the playoffs six straight seasons nevertheless won just two of its last 21 games. The Ducks were second inside the Pacific Division on Dec. 18 after winning 11 of 13, nevertheless they have gone 2-15-4 since, including a 12-game skid last month.