NEW YORK (AP) — Henrik Lundqvist stopped 20 shots for his second shutout of the season and 63rd of his career, leading the New York Rangers over the Ottawa Senators 3-0 on Sunday night.
Kevin Hayes, Michael Grabner and Mika Zibanejad scored, and Mats Zuccarello had two assists to help the Rangers win the teams’ first meeting since the Senators eliminated New York in six games in the Eastern Conference semifinals last May.
New York bounced back from consecutive road losses to win for the seventh time in nine games and get its sixth straight victory at home.
Craig Anderson finished with 24 saves for the Senators, who lost in regulation on the road for the first time this season after starting 4-0-1.
With the Rangers leading 1-0, Lundqvist was tested early in the third. Mark Borowiecki fired a shot from the left point that the goalie stopped, and then he had to make a sensational left pad save on former teammate Derick Brassard’s tip attempt on the rebound a little more than two minutes in. The Senators managed just three more shots on goal the rest of the period.
Grabner doubled New York’s lead with a deflection on Marc Staal’s shot from the point for his ninth of the season at 4:52. Grabner has eight goals and an assist in his last 11 games after getting a goal and an assist in the first 10.
There was some pushing and shoving about 2 1/2 minutes later after Borowiecki took a hit from the Rangers’ Brendan Smith and went into the boards and crumpled to the ice. Borowiecki was down for several minutes and appeared to lose consciousness before being helped to the dressing room. Smith received a five-minute major for interference and a game misconduct, ending his night.
Zibanejad’s empty-netter with about 2 1/2 minutes remaining made it 3-0 with his 10th.
Hayes got the Rangers on the scoreboard first, taking a pass from Jesper Fast and firing a shot from the right circle that went over Anderson’s left shoulder for his fifth of the season at 4:46 of the second.
Ottawa picked up its intensity in the latter part of the middle period. Lundqvist had to stop a tip attempt in front by Mark Stone and a follow backhand try by Jean-Gabriel Pageau with just over four minutes remaining. The Rangers goalie also denied a slap shot by Dion Phaneuf less than a minute later.
The Rangers were held without a shot until Zuccarello’s wrister about eight minutes into the game. They had three attempts in the final 26 seconds to finish the scoreless opening period with a 10-7 advantage.
Mike Hoffman had a one-timer for Ottawa that went off the post with about 8 1/2 minutes remaining in the first, and Lundqvist’s best save of the period came with about 6 minutes left as he gloved a shot by Brassard on an odd-man rush.
NOTES: C Matt Duchene has no points in five games with Ottawa since being acquired from Colorado as part of a three-team trade that sent F Kyle Turris to Nashville. … Ottawa opened a stretch of 10 of 11 away from home. … The Senators, who lost in overtime at home to Arizona on Saturday, completed the fourth of 19 back-to-backs this season. They are 3-0-1 in the first games, and 2-1-1 in the second. … The teams play two more times this season: Dec. 13 and Feb. 17, both at Ottawa. … The Rangers improved to 8-3-0 when scoring first and 6-0-0 when leading after two periods. … New York killed off all three Ottawa power plays and is 27 for 31 on the penalty kill over the last 10 games.
Senators: At Washington on Wednesday night in the middle game of a three-game trip.
Rangers: At Carolina on Wednesday night before a four-game homestand.
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