DALLAS — Throughout their four-game winless stretch, especially in the last two — the loss to the Islanders and the shootout loss to the Avalanche — the Rangers kept saying they were playing fine and that if they continued to play that way, the goals eventually would come.
They came Saturday — three in the third period in a 6-3 victory over the Dallas Stars, who lost at home for the first time this season.
“We started seeing them go in,’’ said Vincent Trocheck, who had two goals. “Our power play was good tonight . . . We were getting a little bit tight, gripping our sticks a little too tight, just from a couple games not scoring. But we’ve been getting chances, and tonight we were able to capitalize on a couple.’’
The Rangers got a pair of power-play goals in the second period, one from Trocheck and one from Mika Zibanejad, and finished 2-for-5 after entering on a 1-for-14 skid.
Then the first NHL goal by defenseman Zac Jones, at 11:18 of the third period, broke a 3-3 tie and started a scoring spree for the visitors.
Julien Gauthier scored 19 seconds after Jones to make it 5-3 and Trocheck scored his second of the day on a delayed penalty to get the Rangers’ two-game road trip off to a winning start.
The trip concludes with a game Sunday in Arizona against the Coyotes.
It wasn’t a perfect afternoon for the Rangers, though. They lost forward Vitali Kravtsov to an upper-body injury late in the second period. Kravtsov already has missed five games this season to injury. He seemed to have his head bang into the boards as he collided with Dallas defenseman Jani Hakanpaa, and it looks as if he might miss some more time.
Gauthier, who was called up from AHL Hartford during the week because of one of Kravtsov’s previous injuries, moved up from the fourth line to take Kravtsov’s spot and played a strong game.
Gauthier made a nifty play to help set up Jones’ goal. He lifted the stick of Dallas forward Jason Robertson at the blue line, kept the puck in and sent it into the corner to Trocheck, who passed it to Jones, who beat goalie Scott Wedgewood.
Gauthier then won a race with Wedgewood for a loose puck, skated around the goalie and fired it into an open net for his first goal of the season, putting the Rangers in control.
The Rangers’ three third-period goals came after Dallas appeared to take a 4-3 lead on what would have been the second goal of the game by Robertson, at 3:46 of the third period. But Gerard Gallant challenged the play, alleging that the Stars had been offside entering the offensive zone. After a short video review, the Rangers won the challenge and the goal came off the board.
“It was an obvious offside,’’ Gallant said. “The guys inside called it, we saw it on the bench, so we knew it wasn’t a good goal.’’
Trocheck said he looked at the disallowed goal “as an opportunity.’’
“That was like our break, kind of,’’ he said. “That would have put them up, so you take that and try to turn that into momentum for you.’’
The Rangers also got a huge game from their first line of Zibanejad, Chris Kreider and Kaapo Kakko.
Kreider scored their first goal, which tied it at 1-1 at 8:41 of the first period after Mason Marchment opened the scoring 1:09 into the game. Kakko assisted on Kreider’s goal, his first assist of the season.
“I think we played very good today,’’ Kakko said. “We did those things that we’ve been talking about.’’