The Rangers defeated the New York Islanders, 4-3, in overtime tonight at Madison Square Garden to begin their seven-game homestand, and are now 14-6-3 in their last 23 games.
New York has posted a record of 43-18-7 (93 pts.) overall, including a 23-7-2 mark at home.
The Blueshirts’ 23-7-2 (48 pts.) mark at MSG is their best record at home through 32 games since 1993-94 (22-6-4, 48 pts.).
The Rangers have registered at least one point in nine of their last 11 games against the Islanders, posting a record of 8-2-1 over the span.
The Blueshirts completed their season series against the Islanders with a 4-1-1 mark, including a 3-0-0 record at home. Marian Gaborik led the team in scoring with seven points (five goals, two assists).
The Rangers tied their season-high with three power play goals in six attempts (9:17), and finished the season series against the Islanders with a 20.0% success rate on the man advantage (5-25).
The Blueshirts out-shot the Islanders, 36-19, in the contest, and improved to 24-8-1 when out-shooting their opponent. The Rangers’ .727 winning percentage when out-shooting their opponent leads the league.
The Rangers improved to 13-5-2 against Atlantic Division opponents this season, and have out-scored their opponent, 57-43, in divisional play.
New York increased their lead over Boston atop the Eastern Conference standings to 10 points, and own a four-point advantage over Pittsburgh for the Atlantic Division lead. The Rangers now rank second in the league overall with 93 points.
- Brad Richards notched three power play points, including two goals and the primary assist on the overtime, game-winner, and led all skaters with six shots on goal in a season-high, 24:53 of ice time. He has tallied 10 points (three goals, seven assists) in the last nine games, including points in each of the last three contests (three goals, two assists over the span). Richards reached the 20-goal mark for the ninth time, and third consecutive season, and reached the 50-point plateau for the 10th time in his 11-year career.
- Marian Gaborik tallied the game-winning goal, on the power play, with 0:06 remaining in overtime, and added a power play assist in 23:53 of ice time. He has recorded 27 points (10 goals, 17 assists) in the last 26 games, including eight points (four goals, four assists) in the last seven games. Gaborik’s assist at 16:03 of the second period was his team-leading, 60th point of the season, marking the sixth time he has reached that mark.
- Brian Boyle registered the game-tying goal at 3:29 of the third period, was credited with three hits and two blocked shots, and won a game-high, 12-19 face-offs (63%) in 16:00 of ice time. He has now tallied a point in each of the last two games (one goal, one assist).
- Henrik Lundqvist made 16 saves and recorded an assist on Richards’ power play goal at 18:47 of the first period, to improve to 32-14-5 overall with a 18-6-2 mark at home.
- Derek Stepan tallied an assist on the overtime, game-winning goal, and was credited with three hits in a season-high, 22:26 of ice time. The assist was his 30th of the season, and tied his career-high in scoring with 45 points. He has now tallied 14 points (five goals, nine assists) in the last 19 games, including six points (two goals, four assists) in the last seven contests.
- Anton Stralman recorded a power play assist and a season-high, five shots on goal in 21:22 of ice time. He has now tallied eight assists in his last 16 games, including four assists in his last five contests. Stralman finished the season series against the Islanders ranked first among team defensemen in scoring with five assists/points in four games.
- Mats Zuccarello tallied one power play assist and logged 10:40 of ice time in the contest, following his recall from Connecticut (AHL) earlier today. He has now tallied three assists in five career regular season games against the Islanders.
- Ryan McDonagh registered an assist and led all skaters with four blocked shots and 26:36 of ice time. He has now tallied an assist in each of the last two games, and three assists in the last six games.
- Brandon Prust tallied an assist and registered a career-high, four shots on goal in 15:05 of ice time. He has recorded a point in each of the last two games (one goal, one assist).
John Tortorella on tonight’s game…
“I thought we had a lot of pressure for a long night and used all of the minutes to finally get it done. I think the thing that I like the most about it is the way we won. You don’t want to draw it up that way, but the things we are going through as a team, even through this game and some of the bounces and things going on with the game, just to keep a hold of ourselves and stay with it and we used every last second to win this game.”
Marian Gaborik on tonight’s game…
“We talked about how important this one was and to get out of the three game losing streak. We had a pretty good game in Chicago but we came up short. Tonight’s game we played a good game and I’m glad we got that overtime win.”
Brian Boyle on tonight’s game…
“They (Islanders) are pretty opportunistic. They have some pretty skilled guys that can make some plays. You want to play their top line pretty hard because they have three horses that are all having great years. John Tavares, you don’t hear his name enough, he’s an underrated player, a really, really good player and he’s tough to play against. He makes a lot of things happen out of nothing and we understand that and we try to play him hard. They can make plays too, it’s not easy to win, but tonight we stuck with it and it was great.”
The Rangers will return to action when they face-off against the Carolina Hurricanes on Tuesday, Mar. 13, at Madison Square Garden (7:30 p.m.), as they continue their seven-game homestand. The game will be televised live on MSG Network and can be heard on 1050 ESPN Radio.