It’s not too often you get to score a series clincher. That’s exactly what Dominic Moore accomplished on a perfect feed from Brian Boyle with 1:53 left in the second period. His sweet finish came courtesy of a hard working shift from the fourth line. Derek Dorsett didn’t get credit for an assist but deserved one for winning a crucial battle against Montreal defenseman Andrei Markov. That kept the play alive allowing Ryan McDonagh to pass for Boyle, who found Moore in front for his third of the postseason.
A year earlier, Moore was out of hockey following the death of his wife Katie, who lost her battle with cancer in January 2013. After spending time away from the rink, Moore re-signed with the Rangers last summer. Originally a Rangers’ third round selection in 2000, he spent four years with Harvard University. Following a brief stint in ’03-04, he became a regular after the lockout. Anchoring the HMO Line between Ryan Hollweg and Jed Ortmeyer, Moore carved his niche as a smart two-way checking pivot who could supply energy and strong penalty killing. Following a full 82-games in which he registered nine goals and nine assists to help the Rangers reach the playoffs in ’05-06, he was dealt to the Predators, who in turn sent him to the Pens.
Astonishingly, the heady Moore traveled throughout the NHL playing for eight teams (Pens, Wild, Leafs, Sabres, Panthers, Canadiens, Lightning, Sharks) before returning to Broadway. After spending nearly a decade away, he once again found a familiar role under coach Alain Vigneault. In 73 contests, Moore tallied six goals and 12 helpers while forming solid chemistry with Boyle, Derek Dorsett or Daniel Carcillo. Against the Canadiens, he even took Derek Brassard’s place and set up two goals in a Game 1 win. He then replaced Derek Stepan when he was out. During the postseason, Moore has three goals and four assists while adding superb penalty killing and winning key faceoffs.
There’s not a more fitting player who played the hero last night. Moore is a great inspiration and is the favorite to win the Masterton Trophy. His story is one of perseverance. It’s one made for TV. I never wanted Moore to leave in the first place. When Glen Sather brought him back, I was excited along with many fans who appreciate what he brings. It really is great to see how much teammates love him. Kudos to Dom.