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TimeApr 22, 2017

Rangers v Canadiens - Game 5 Contributions

Photo: David Kirouac/Icon Sportswire

The only original six series in the first round is quickly turning into a classic, with two evenly matched teams and two all world goalies getting better as the series moves into the best of three games.

Behind the rising intensity, these are two very detailed teams contributing very similar, with Montreal having a very slight 3.7% advantage in total game five contributions (excluding goaltending).

Montreal had an expected big push at home in period one, enjoying a 60% contribution advantage but the Rangers managed a 53% advantage in a slightly less active period two. Period three was nearly identical and overtime similar.

Forward Contributions - Rangers

1. Matt Zuccarello was 75% better than the second contributing Ranger forward and 35% better than the top Montreal forward in game five. He is the Rangers best kept secret in the series with only one goal, but his contributions on defense have been exceptional, which are more difficult to see but no less important. He leads all forwards defensively in the series and only Radulov has contributed more offensively on a play-by-play basis.

2. JT Miller and 3. Rick Nash contributed in the second and third spots and have a similar average over the five games. Nash has now put together two strong games, both above his season average while Miller has been more consistent over the series.

Forward Contributions - Montreal

1. Artturi Lehkonen led all Montreal forwards in play-by-play contributions which resulted in a goal and an assist. He sits third among Montreal forwards after five games and has been strong defensively.

2. Brendan Gallagher and 3. Tomas Plekanec were similar in Game five and not far behind Lehkonen. Absent from that list is Pacioretty, who sits in the fourth spot among Montreal forwards after five games. Montreal needs to get him going.

Defensemen Contributions - Rangers

1. Ryan McDonagh, 2. Nick Holden and 3. Dan Girardi were all well above their regular season averages. Holden set up a few key plays including an exceptional join and pass to Zuccarello in the first minute of the game. He also settled in defensively which will be important in game six.

Defensemen Contributions – Montreal

1. Jeff Petry led all Montreal defensemen with a significant defensive contribution, followed by 2. Andrei Markov and 3. Jordie Benn. Markov has been consistently above his regular season average and Benn had his strongest performance of the playoffs despite him being losing Zibanejad for a moment on the overtime goal.

Weber leads the Montreal defensemen after five games, but since game two his play-by-play contributions have decreased each game to his lowest total in game five. Look for him to break that streak if the Canadiens hope to push a game seven.

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