Brassard’s OT goal gives Rangers win after Red Wings tie game late
The New York Rangers are still having trouble closing out games. They took solace, however, in shaking off a late tying goal and getting a win in overtime.
No shootout misery this time.
Derick Brassard scored a power-play goal 1:50 into overtime, after Detroit tied it in the closing seconds, to give the Rangers their fifth straight victory over the Red Wings, 4-3 on Wednesday night.
Lee Stempniak gave the Rangers a 3-2 lead with 7:50 left in the third period, but Detroit got even for the second time when Tomas Tatar scored on a power play with 7.7 seconds left and goalie Jonas Gustavsson off for an extra skater.
"You never want it to happen that late in the game," said Rangers forward Rick Nash, who scored the opening goal. "But you have to give credit to our guys. We regrouped and came out pretty good in overtime."
Pavel Datsyuk tripped Martin St. Louis 46 seconds into overtime, and Brassard took advantage when he slammed in the rebound of Dan Girardi’s shot.
"When they scored the tying goal, we just stayed positive," Brassard said. "We talked to each other on the bench and we got it done."
Stempniak was in line for the winner when he finished a 2-on-1 rush by scoring off a pass from Dominic Moore.
St. Louis added a goal for the Rangers, who dropped their previous two games in shootouts. Henrik Lundqvist stopped 25 shots after getting a rare game off on Monday night.
"I felt like we had a little more energy. They played last night and we tried to take advantage of that," Lundqvist said.
The Rangers improved to 5-0-2 in one-goal games, the only losses being the consecutive shootout defeats on the homestand.
After scoring only two power-play goals in their first 10 games, the Rangers have three in their past two.
"Our guys are battling hard," said Alain Vigneault, who coached his 900th NHL game. "In overtime they took a penalty and we were able to make our power play count."
Jakub Kindl and Daniel Cleary scored 13 seconds apart in the second to erase Detroit’s 2-0 deficit. Gustavsson made 26 saves, but Detroit dropped its third straight (0-1-2) and second in two nights.
The Red Wings, who lost 3-1 at Ottawa on Tuesday night, were able to rescue a point with Tatar’s timely score.
"That was a big goal," he said. "Too bad we couldn’t get a second point, but that was a pretty good comeback. We’re feeling better and better about ourselves."
Gustavsson sustained a shoulder injury on the winning goal. Red Wings coach Mike Babcock said the backup goalie will be re-evaluated on Thursday, but will likely be out for a while.
"I thought we did a lot of good things tonight," Babcock said. "Third game in four nights — it’s mental. You just compete, just play."
Kindl scored the Red Wings’ first goal against the Rangers in 177 minutes with his first of the season. It also broke Lundqvist’s shutout streak against Detroit of 211 minutes, 8 seconds over four games — including two shutouts at Madison Square Garden last season.
Cleary tied it at 2, but the goal wasn’t picked up until a video review more than 90 seconds later. The puck clearly hit the back of the net and came back out for Cleary’s first.
The Red Wings came out better in the second and put pressure on the Rangers, but they still couldn’t solve Lundqvist — even with the aid of a penalty shot.
After a Detroit drive struck the post, the puck was covered in the crease by the glove of defenseman Kevin Klein, who returned after missing one game with a bruised foot.
Gustav Nyqvist was awarded a penalty shot at 5:51, but his drive was knocked away by Lundqvist’s glove — drawing chants of "Hen-rik! Hen-rik!"
Just 48 seconds later, St. Louis made it 2-0 with a breakaway goal — his fourth tally of the season and third in two games. St. Louis was sprung by a pass from defenseman Matt Hunwick who fired the puck from his end up to St. Louis at the Detroit blue line.
The Rangers had nine shots and led 1-0 before the Red Wings put a puck on Lundqvist.
Detroit had the first power play when the Rangers were caught with too many men on the ice, but that advantage was cut short 1:12 in when Henrik Zetterberg tripped Nash, who then made the Red Wings pay with a fluke goal.
Hunwick set up Brassard for a drive from above the left circle that struck Nash — who was facing the net — in the behind and caromed past Gustavsson on the power play at 6:36.
"I saw him winding up and tried to cross in front of the goalie to take his eyes away," Nash said. "Then, I don’t know what happened. It hit my butt and went in."
It was Nash’s 10th goal and first in three games, ending his longest drought of the season. He has scored in eight of New York’s 12 games.
NOTES: Detroit hadn’t scored against New York since Oct. 26, 2013. … The Rangers, 5-1-2 in their last eight, have their first five-game winning streak against Detroit since Jan. 3, 1983-Jan. 16, 1984.