NEW YORK (AP)Chris Kreider scored on a breakaway at 4:07 of overtime and Igor Shesterkin made 19 saves as the New York Rangers won their third straight game Tuesday night with a 1-0 victory over the Philadelphia Flyers.
Carter Hart had stopped all 35 shots he faced and the Rangers hit the post four times before Kreider finally deposited a backhand after taking a pass from Mika Zibanejad, sending the Madison Square Garden crowd into a frenzy.
Hart made five saves in OT before Kreider scored his fourth of the season and his 35th career game-winning goal, tying Steve Vickers for eighth-most in franchise history.
”It was loud all night. They were getting as frustrated as we were that pucks weren’t going in,” Kreider said of the fans. ”It was an exciting ending.”
The Flyers began the third period on a power play after defenseman Ryan Lindgren was assessed an extra two-minute roughing penalty after a scrum behind the Rangers net to conclude the second.
New York had two power plays in the third – including one at 15:25 when former Rangers defenseman Tony DeAngelo was called for delay of game – but also failed to score.
After a scoreless first in which the Rangers held a 9-7 shots advantage, the home team dominated the second but couldn’t solve Hart.
The 24-year-old Hart, who is 5-0-2 this season, stopped long shots from Rangers defensemen K’Andre Miller and Jacob Trouba early in the second, then turned away two one-timers by Zibanejad during a Rangers power play.
Zibanejad also hit the post behind Hart 12 minutes into the second before Kreider had a short-handed breakaway later in the middle period and his shot struck the post flush to Hart’s short side.
The Rangers outshot the Flyers 14-4 in the second.
Hart continued to vex the Rangers in the third, making a sharp pad save on a point-blank shot by Artemi Panarin 13 minutes into the stanza and a glove stop on Kreider at 14:52.
”It’s a terrific start for Carter,” Flyers coach John Tortorella said. ”They see Carter laying it out there. … I hope it builds camaraderie.”
Shesterkin was also sharp, denying former Ranger Kevin Hayes from in front at 18:49 of the third.
The shutout was Shesterkin’s first this season and the ninth of his career. The Rangers netminder improved to 6-0-2 and his eight-game point streak is the second-longest to begin a season in team history behind Gilles Villemure (1971-72).
”He’s our best player most every night and he certainly was tonight,” Kreider said.
The Rangers are 7-2-2 in their last 11 games against the Flyers. Last season, New York went 3-0-1 versus Philadelphia.
”The effort was there. Carter gives us a chance. We just didn’t score,” said Tortorella, in his first season behind the Flyers’ bench. ”As long as I see effort and care and belief in what we’re dong, I’m leaving the building in a decent mood. That’s the way I feel right now.”
Philadelphia defenseman Justin Braun played his 800th career game. The 35-year-old blueliner, who skated in eight regular-season games and 19 playoff contests for the Rangers last season, rejoined the Flyers as a free agent in July. He has 197 points in 13 seasons with the Sharks, Rangers and Flyers.
NOTES: The visit to Madison Square Garden was the only one this season for the Flyers. The teams meet Dec. 17 and March 1 in Philadelphia. . The Rangers were without injured forwards Filip Chytil and Vitali Kravtsov. They scratched defenseman Libor Hajek. . The Flyers were missing injured forwards James van Riemsdyk, Sean Couturier, Cam Atkinson and Patrick Brown. Philadelphia also scratched center Tanner Laczynski and defenseman Egor Zamula.
Flyers: Visit the Toronto Maple Leafs on Wednesday.
Rangers: Host the Boston Bruins on Thursday night.
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