NHL Game Summary - Pittsburgh at NY Rangers
(Monday, January 5th)
Final Score: NY Rangers 4, Pittsburgh 0
New York, NY (Sports Network) - Henrik Lundqvist made 27 saves for his first shutout of the season as the New York Rangers dropped the struggling Pittsburgh Penguins, 4-0, at Madison Square Garden.
Paul Mara, Scott Gomez, Nigel Dawes and Chris Drury each had a goal and an assist for the Rangers, who had lost four of five coming into the game.
"Our penalty kill was great tonight and that was the key for us tonight," said Lundqvist. "It felt pretty good to have the lead after the first and we improved from there."
New York is now halfway done its season and has posted a record of 24-14-3, good for first place in the Atlantic Division and third overall in the Eastern Conference.
Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 22 shots in the loss for the slumping Penguins, who have dropped a season-high five straight and have just five wins in their past 17 games.
"We weren't ready to play and Lundqvist deserves a lot of credit," said Pittsburgh coach Michel Therrien. "He was outstanding. We weren't the best team on the ice tonight and the way we are competing right now is not good."
The Rangers scored exactly one minute into the game on the power play. Michal Rozsival kept in a clearing attempt at the right point to keep the attack going and the puck eventually got to Dawes, who from the left circle sent a shot on net that hit off a Penguin and got past Fleury.
Lundqvist was New York's best player in the first period as he stopped all 12 shots he faced to keep the Penguins off the board, and helped kill off four power plays -- including a full two minutes of a 5-on-3 disadvantage.
New York took a 2-0 lead late in the second period on the power play. Just moments after Matt Cooke was called for interference, Gomez won a left circle faceoff draw and got the puck back to Mara, who snapped a quick shot past Fleury with 2:33 left in the frame.
Lundqvist posted eight saves in the second period to keep the Penguins without a goal.
The Rangers sealed the win with 7:30 to play, as Dawes dumped the puck around the boards to Petr Prucha, who from behind the net centered the puck for a one-timer by Drury that got past Fleury.
Gomez added a shorthanded, empty-net goal with 3:11 to play to account for the final score.
The Rangers host Montreal on Wednesday...Pittsburgh returns home to play Atlanta on Tuesday...New York has won four straight against Pittsburgh, including a pair of 3-2 shootout wins this season...Dawes played in his 100th game...The Rangers have won eight straight at the Garden against Pittsburgh...Lundqvist is 12-1-1 against the Penguins at home in his career...The win was the 20th on the season for Lundqvist and he is the fifth goaltender in NHL history to record at least 20 wins a season in his first four seasons...It was the first time since November 19 that New York had two power-play goals in a game...Lundqvist has 18 shutouts in his career.
01/05 23:41:07 ET