Pittsburgh, PA (Sports Network) – Ryan Callahan scored the game-winner off a nice feed from Brandon Dubinsky with 2:22 remaining in overtime, giving the New York Rangers a dramatic 3-2 victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins after a furious final three minutes of regulation.
Henrik Lundqvist, who missed New York’s previous two games due to an illness, was sensational between the pipes before allowing two late goals. He was whistled for unsportsmanlike conduct on Matt Cooke’s go-ahead tally with 1:53 to go, but Marc Staal scored the tying goal just 27 seconds later to send the game to OT.
Lundqvist finished with 37 saves in the Rangers’ third straight win, while his counterpart, Marc-Andre Fleury, stopped 22-of-25 shots in the Penguins’ second loss in five games.
“[Lundqvist] was solid, but I don’t think he made a ton of second saves,” Penguins center Sidney Crosby said. “We had good quality shots, but I don’t think he took anything away from us.”
Soon after failing on their fifth power play, the Penguins scored the tying goal with 2:31 remaining in the third stanza. Chris Kunitz, who was stoned by a Lundqvist kick save on the man advantage, put home a rebound before Staal’s wrister from the left circle gave the hosts the lead, 2-1, shortly thereafter.
The Rangers answered right back, as Staal’s snap shot from the left circle surprised Fleury with 1:26 showing.
Dubinsky and Callahan came down on a 2-on-1 in the extra session, and the former used a toe-drag to avoid a defender before sending a pass to Callahan at the right doorstep for the easy re-direct.
“I made an early pass and tried to get the defenseman to commit a little bit…[Dubinsky] made a tremendous play. I just went to the net and had my stick there,” Callahan said of the game-winner.
Lundqvist was peppered with 12 shots while Fleury only faced five in a scoreless first period.
Again Lundqvist was up to the task with 12 saves in the second, and Erik Christensen gave the Rangers the lead just past the midway point of the period with a turnaround wrister between the circles.
The Penguins are just 3-5-1 at home, while the Rangers improved to 6-2-0 on the road…The Penguins had won eight of the previous nine games in this series…Crosby, who had multi-point efforts in Pittsburgh’s previous five games, was credited with an assist on Kunitz’s goal…The Rangers did not have a man advantage the entire game, compared to six for the Penguins.