Jackets eye first season series win over Rangers since 2018-19

The New York Rangers could not overcome allowing 40 shots on goal for the fifth straight game and saw their 10-game winning streak disappear Sunday against the host Columbus Blue Jackets.

On Wednesday, the Rangers hope to improve defensively and become the NHL’s first team to 40 victories this season when they host the Blue Jackets to conclude a home-and-home set.

The Rangers are coming off their first loss since a setback on home ice to the Vegas Golden Knights on Jan. 26. New York never led in the 4-2 loss at Columbus and missed a chance at setting a team record with an 11th straight win.

“I don’t think it’s something that we’ll dwell on too much,” New York defenseman Adam Fox said. “Obviously, it would have been cool for us to have that, but we’re trying to go into every game and win. So to make it 11 straight, or to snap a one-game losing streak, the loss still hurts the same.”

New York allowed 41 shots on goal after allowing at least 40 in the final four games of the streak against the Islanders, Dallas Stars, New Jersey Devils and Philadelphia Flyers. The Rangers scored twice on 40 shots as Artemi Panarin scored his career-high 33rd goal and Adam Edstrom also scored.

But New York gave up the final two goals on odd-man rushes, something backup goaltender Jonathan Quick constantly faced.

“They came at us with a lot of speed,” Rangers coach Peter Laviolette said. “They’d get behind us with odd-man rushes. It wasn’t one or two — it was too many — and we couldn’t capitalize at the other end. That was the difference in the game.”

Columbus is 33 points behind the Rangers in the Metropolitan Division but is playing slightly better of late. The Blue Jackets earned the win as Jack Roslovic and Ivan Provorov scored in the second period while Elvis Merzlikins made 38 saves and the Blue Jackets blocked 26 shots.

Dmitri Voronkov scored for the second straight game, and nine of his 16 goals are in his past 14 games. Voronkov added an assist, Kiril Marchenko scored and added an assist and Johnny Gaudreau contributed two assists.

The Blue Jackets were five games into a nine-game losing streak after their last visit to New York on Nov. 12. Over their past 14 games, Columbus is 6-7-1.

“We are growing,” Columbus coach Pascal Vincent said. “We just learn from the past. We’ve had more success recently. There is more confidence. It’s a team that is learning and tonight was the result of those setbacks. Hopefully we’re going to keep growing. We locked it down in the third and it was good to see.”

Columbus is trying to win consecutive games for only the third time this season and the first time since beating Chicago and New Jersey Nov. 22 and 24.

The Blue Jackets have won two of the first three meetings and are attempting to capture the season series for the first time since 2018-19.