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Rangers earn point, but fall in overtime to Lightning: 4-3

The New York Rangers during the National Anthem. Photo by: Stacy Podelski

The New York Rangers (41-16-6) were able to gain a vital point on the road, but had their three-game winning streak ended by dropping a 4-3 overtime decision to the Tampa Bay Lightning (30-28-6) in NHL action on Friday night.

It was a night of momentum swings, as the night started off well for New York as center Artem Anisimov (13) found the back of the cage for the 1-0 Rangers lead at the 10:09 mark of the first period. At the end of the frame the Rangers were outshot 13-3, but it was on the second shot by Anisimov that helped to give the Blueshirts the lead.

For Anisimov, the goal allowed the young Blueshirts-star to score in back-to-back games, as the center also found the back of the cage in the 3-2 victory over the Carolina Hurricanes on Thursday.

The Rangers took the 2-0 lead in the second period, when at the 2:43 mark sniper Marian Gaborik (31) netted a power play slap shot. For Gaborik the Blueshirts-winger now has goals in four of the last five games for New York.

Tampa Bay started to cut at the New York lead to 2-1, when Tom Pyatt (7) recorded a wrister at the 7:09 mark. It was a hustle play by the Lightning as Pyatt pushed the puck past Rangers keeper Henrik Lundqvist.

Lundqvist, celebrating his 30th birthday, was stellar in the cage for New York.  The Swedish-keeper not only made 27 saves, but also had a key poke-check of a Steven Stamkos shot in the second period.

The Lightning though continued to strike at Lundqvist cage, and found two goals in the third period, gaining the 3-2 lead. First Teddy Purcell (18) tied the game for Tampa Bay on his wrister at 2:27, before Stamkos (45) connected on a wicked-wrist shot for the 3-2 lead at 10:17 mark.

New York did not back down, as Brandon Dubinsky, who has been playing better hockey as of late, connected on a snap shot at the 16:33 mark tying the game between the Rangers and Lightning at three.

For Dubinsky, the goal is his first in the last 13 games, while the helper for Gaborik gives the Rangers-sniper 23 points in the last 21 games.

Ryan Malone gave the Lightning the game-winning goal at the1:58 mark in overtime, to give Tampa Bay their 20th victory at home this season.

New York will return to Madison Square Garden for a quick home game, before starting a three-game road trip. Before that trip, the Blueshirts will host the reigning Stanley Cup Champions the Boston Bruins on Sunday. The nationally televised game (NBC) is slated to start at 12:30 p.m.

Written on March 3, 2012

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