Rangers beat Islanders, snap losing streak
Mats Zuccarello scored the tiebreaking goal with 5:05 remaining in the third period, and the New York Rangers snapped a season-high five-game losing streak with a 2-1 victory over the host New York Islanders Saturday afternoon.
The Rangers won for the first time since a 2-1 decision at St. Louis on Dec. 31, and also won for the first time in eight all-time visits to Barclays Center. It might have been their final game in Brooklyn, as the Islanders are expected to play their entire home schedule at the renovated Nassau Coliseum for the next two seasons before their new home arena near Belmont Park is ready.
Zuccarello gave the Rangers only their third win in the last 16 games against the Islanders by scoring his fifth goal on the season.
As soon as teammate Mika Zibanejad won an offensive zone faceoff in the right circle from Casey Cizikas, Zuccarello headed straight to the net. Defenseman Tony DeAngelo gained possession from Zibanejad and threaded a pass through traffic that Zuccarello redirected past Islanders goaltender Robin Lehner.
Rookie Filip Chytil scored the tying goal with under six minutes left in the second as the Rangers also improved to 6-11-5 in their last 22 games since Nov. 21.
Anthony Beauvillier scored for the Islanders, who lost for only the second time in their last nine games.
Backup goaltender Alexandar Georgiev recorded his second career win in as many starts against the Islanders with a 24-save performance. After the Rangers went ahead, he preserved the lead by making a point-blank glove save on Ryan Pulock with 14 seconds remaining.
Lehner made 24 saves and saw a career-high eight-game winning streak stopped.
The Islanders nearly took the lead with 10:57 left in the second when Nick Leddy's backhander ricocheted off the right post, but went ahead 23 seconds later when Beauvillier scored for the seventh time in 10 career games against the Rangers.
Devon Toews started the play by carrying into the offensive zone along the left wing and backhanded a pass to Pulock, who made a quick cross-ice pass to Josh Bailey. Bailey connected with Beauvillier, who sped through the slot and put a backhander into the net for his 12th of the season.
The Rangers tied the game with 5:51 remaining in the second when Boo Nieves intercepted Leddy's pass intended for Jordan Eberle. Nieves sped through the slot and made a slick pass to Chytil, who put a wrist shot by Lehner.
--Field Level Media
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