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Blueshirts blank Isles in fifth straight victory

The New York Rangers (22-8-4) took a 3-1 edge in the Battle of the Big Apple for their fifth victory in a row with a 3-0 decision over the New York Islanders (11-17-6) in NHL action on Monday night.

In a physical battle between the two teams, it was the total team effort by the Blueshirts that helped them to the two points. The Blueshirts finished the night blocking 25 shots; as they were putting pressure on the Isles offense all game long.

The Isles had plenty of opportunities taking 28 shots, but Henrik Lundqvist (28 saves) and the defense was up to the task. Leading the Rangers offense was rookie Carl Hagelin (6) recorded his second two-goal game in his career.

Blueshirts winger Marian Gaborik (22) capped off the victory with an empty net goal at the 17:32 mark of the third period of play.  With the mark Gabby now has a five-game goal scoring streak.

The Rangers had plenty of huge blocked shots throughout the game, including stops by Brian Boyle and Anton Stralman which stopped one of the best Islanders opportunities in the game.

Milan Jurcina rang the post twice for the Isles, as the blueliner finished with three hits and one blocked shot in the game.

The Blueshirts will continue their march for first place in the Eastern Conference with a Wednesday night showdown against the Washington Capitals. The Rangers/Caps game is scheduled to air on the Versus network, with face-off scheduled for 7:30 p.m.

Meanwhile the Isles will end 2011 with a two-game homestand starting on Thursday hosting the Calgary Flames. The Isles/Flames game is scheduled to air on the MSG Plus network, with face-off slated for 7:00 p.m.

Written on December 27, 2011

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