MONTREAL (AP) — Chris Drury scored the deciding goal in the
shootout to give the New York Rangers a 4-3 win over the
Montreal Canadiens on Tuesday night.
Markus Naslund and Nik Antropov beat Carey Price on New York’s
first two attempts before Drury scored to seal the win for the
Rangers, who blew three one-goal leads in regulation.
Henrik Lundqvist, who made his 60th start of the season, stopped
Andrei Kostitsyn on Montreal’s first attempt after making 26
New York moved one point ahead of Montreal in a tightly
contested race for the final playoff spots in the Eastern
Nik Antropov, Nikolai Zherdev and Ryan Callahan all scored to
stake the Rangers to the lead.
Andrei Markov’s goal with 4:53 remaining in the third drew
Montreal even at 3.
Markov, who assisted on Alex Kovalev’s power-play goal late in
the second, beat Lundqvist with a sharp-angled shot from deep in
the left circle.
Maxim Lapierre also scored for Montreal, but Montreal fell to
1-1-2 under general manager Bob Gainey, who moved behind the
bench after firing coach Guy Carbonneau on March 9.
The Rangers’ NHL top-ranked penalty-killing unit was tested by a
tripping call against Scott Gomez with 1:44 left in regulation.
Antropov scored for the third straight game 7:13 into the second
to put New York up 1-0. The Russian forward beat Price during
4-on-4 play for his fourth goal in seven games since the Rangers
acquired him from Toronto.
Kovalev, who returned after missing two games because of the
flu, got Montreal even at 1 during a power play late in the
second. The Canadiens took advantage of Lauri Korpikoski’s delay
of game penalty for putting the puck over the glass.
Kovalev, who had two stints with the Rangers, scored his 17th
goal at 18:26. He snapped a one-timer from the right side of the
net to put Markov’s cross-ice pass from the left point past
Lundqvist and inside the right post.
Zherdev gave New York its second one-goal lead at 5:32 when he
took Gomez’s drop pass and put a wrist shot past Price from the
right side that appeared to handcuff the goalie.
Lapierre tied it just 40 seconds later when he beat Lundqvist
with a shot from the slot at 6:12.
Callahan extended his point streak to four games when he put a
backhander through traffic and past Price 10:58 into the third.
Guillaume Latendresse assisted on Markov’s goal in his return
after missing 19 games because of a shoulder injury.