Mika Zibanejad snapped a 15-game streak without a power-play goal Sunday afternoon in Washington after the Swedish center buried a backhanded feed from Patrick Kane for the 5-2 final score in the third period.
For a player who is ranked second among Rangers forwards in average man-advantage ice time, it was his longest stretch of the season without scoring a power-play goal, but Zibanejad is so effective in such situations it wasn’t even noticeable.
“I don’t think I’ve scored a power-play goal in a while,’’ Zibanejad said after the win over the Capitals. “It was a good pass by Kane and it’s important that we have our power play going, going into the playoffs here, the last little bit of the season.
“As long as we win, I don’t really care.’’
Zibanejad’s last power-play goal had come on March 1 in Philadelphia.
Every man-advantage since, however, has seen Zibanejad pose as a threat primarily in his office in the left faceoff circle.
Even when he’s not scoring, Zibanejad is not only peppering opposing goalies with shots, but he’s responsible with the puck when the Rangers work it around the zone.
Zibanejad became the third player in the NHL this season, along with the Oilers’ duo of Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl, to score 20 power-play goals.
The Rangers are now the first team since the 1992-93 and 1993-94 Bruins to have a different player score more than 20 power-play goals in back-to-back seasons.
Chris Kreider had 26 last year and now Zibanejad has 20.
Zibanejad is also the ninth player in Rangers history to score 20 power-play goals in a single season.
Gerard Gallant is the first coach in franchise history to record 100-point seasons in his first two seasons.
New York recorded its 23rd road win and 53rd point on the road, surpassing last season’s mark of 52.
The Rangers’ 53 road points are tied for the third most in franchise history (58 in 2014-15 is record).
The Blueshirts tallied five goals for the 23rd time this season and improved to 31-0-0 this season when scoring four or more goals — the only team in the NHL with a perfect record.
The Rangers were off on Monday before returning to the ice for practice at MSG Training Center on Tuesday.
They will face the Lightning at the Garden on Wednesday, which is their third to last home game before packing up for their final road-trip of the regular season to St. Louis and Columbus.
By: Ny Post