NHL Game Summary - NY Rangers at New Jersey
(Thursday, March 25th)
Final Score: NY Rangers 4, New Jersey 3 (SO)
Newark, NJ (Sports Network) - Erik Christensen scored the only goal of the shootout, and the New York Rangers got a big two points with a 4-3 win over the New Jersey Devils.
In the first round, Christensen banked a forehand shot in off the left post. It was initially waved off, but a replay determined the puck found the right corner of the net after hitting the post and coming back out.
Henrik Lundqvist then made stops on Zach Parise and Patrik Elias before Travis Zajac shot wide to seal the Rangers' second straight win.
Brandon Dubinsky, Chris Drury and Artem Anisimov each had a goal, while Lundqvist stopped 35 shots for the Rangers, who moved to within three points of Boston for the Eastern Conference's final playoff spot.
"We haven't had a good record in overtime or the shootout, but we did the job tonight," said Lundqvist. "It was big getting the first goal in the shootout and it was a big two points. We needed this to stay alive."
Elias had a goal and an assist while Jamie Langenbrunner and Ilya Kovalchuk each lit the lamp for the Devils, who have dropped three of their last four. Martin Brodeur stopped 28 shots in the loss.
"They scored some timely goals on us and it cost us," said Langenbrunner. "They made a good play on the tying goal and Drury is a good player. We wanted to get the two points, but we played well and got one point out of it."
With the consolation point, New Jersey again took over first place atop the Atlantic Division from Pittsburgh by virtue of one more victory. The Devils also have a game in hand.
The Devils took a 3-2 lead with 7:23 to play when a misplay in the neutral zone resulted in Langenbrunner blasting a shot from the right circle to beat Lundqvist on the far side.
New York, though, pulled Lundqvist for an extra attacker and tied it when Christensen sent a backhand pass from behind the net out front where Drury tapped it in with 16.5 seconds left.
"I didn't see Drury, it was just a lucky pass," said Christensen about the goal. "In those sort of situations you can't look for a perfect play, you just have to thrown as much on net as you can cause you never know what's going to happen."
The Devils grabbed a 1-0 lead 5:21 into the first as Brian Rolston blasted a shot on net from the top of the left circle that Lundqvist stopped, but the rebound sat out front and Kovalchuk slammed it home.
Brodeur needed to make just four stops in the first frame to keep New York off the board.
The Rangers tied the game with a power-play goal 7:32 into the second. The Blueshirts did a good job of battling along the left boards to gain control of the puck, and Dubinsky's shot from the top of the left circle hit off a Devil in front and past Brodeur.
New Jersey nearly took the lead back halfway through the second as Parise knocked the puck into the net, but it was waived off after Parise was ruled to have used his arm to direct the puck into the net.
The Devils took a 2-1 lead 3:53 into the third as David Clarkson fired a pass from the outside left circle to the slot where Elias lasered a shot over the glove of Lundqvist.
New York, though, got the goal back halfway through the final stanza. Brandon Prust fired a pass from behind the left side of the net to the slot for Anisimov, who skated over to the right side and lifted it over Brodeur.
The Rangers play at Toronto on Saturday...New Jersey plays in Montreal on Saturday...Each team won three times in the season series, with each squad taking a win after regulation...New York went 1-for-3 on the power play while New Jersey was 0-for-3.
03/25 23:01:57 ET