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Rangers slip past Flyers in Game 7

New York, NY (SportsNetwork.com) - Henrik Lundqvist outdueled Steve Mason, Dan Carcillo and Benoit Pouliot scored in the second period and the New York Rangers outlasted the Philadelphia Flyers to post a 2-1 victory in the deciding Game 7 of this Eastern Conference quarterfinal series.

One night after being yanked after two periods in a 5-2 defeat, Lundqvist made 26 saves, only letting a Jason Akeson third-period shot slip by him en route to upping his all-time Game 7 record to 4-1.

Carcillo and Pouliot lit the lamp within an 8:40 span for the Rangers, who have had to endure a seven-game series in the first round in each of the last three seasons but won each time.

New York will take on the Metropolitan Division-champion Pittsburgh Penguins in the second round.

At times their only serviceable player on the ice, Mason made 31 saves for the Flyers, who had won each of their last three Game 7s dating back to 2008.

The Flyers misfired on their initial power play early in the second period, and Carcillo exited the box after serving his club's bench minor to redirect a cross-ice dish from Mats Zuccarello which gave the Rangers a lead at 3:06.

Mason did the splits to deny Martin St. Louis at the right post off a 3-on-1 with 7 1/2 minutes elapsed, but he couldn't get across in time to stop Pouliot's one-timer off a Derick Brassard dish to give New York a two-goal edge with 8:14 to play in the second.

Philadelphia remained stuck in quicksand, and endured some misfortune when Claude Giroux had Lundqvist prone in his crease, but lifted a Jakub Voracek centering feed over the crossbar with four minutes before the second intermission.

Mason was then left alone on two point-blank chances in the final minute of the second, making deft saves on both and keeping his club alive with 16 stops in the middle frame.

Akeson gave the visitors some life, following up his own miss from the right circle with a successful try inside the left post to bring his club within 2-1 at 4:32 of the third.

Lundqvist had trouble handling the puck from the start as the Flyers began to press more offensively. He needed to fend off a pair of crease rushes, and then stopped Michael Raffl from the left side midway through the period.

Mason was called to the bench for an extra attacker on two separate occasions in the final 1:33 of regulation, but Philadelphia mustered only one quality chance for the remainder.

The game opened on a heart-stopping note. Rick Nash, who went scoreless in the series, flipped a shot off the left post on the game's first shift. It ended up being a positive omen for the visitors, as Mason stopped 10 shots and Lundqvist 11 in the scoreless first period.

Game Notes

New York upped its Game 7 record to 7-5, and maintained its perfect 6-0 ledger at Madison Square Garden ... Philadelphia fell to 9-7 during the terminal contest in best-of-sevens and 3-4 on the road ... The Flyers suffered their first Game 7 setback since a 2-1 result at Tampa Bay in the Eastern Conference finals on May 22, 2004 ... The Rangers haven't dropped a Game 7 since falling to the Washington Capitals in the 2009 Eastern Conference quarterfinals ... Carcillo had been a healthy scratch in favor of J.T. Miller in Games 5 and 6 ... In the pivotal second period, the Rangers outshot the Flyers by an 18-5 margin ... Nash has recorded just two goals in 23 postseason appearances for the Blue Jackets and Rangers ... The last 17 teams to score first in a Game 7 have won that game to advance.

04/30 23:03:58 ET