Rangers Win In OT
Pittsburgh — Derick Brassard scored 3:06 into overtime to give the New York Rangers a 3-2 victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference semifinals Friday night.
Play continued after Brassard’s goal, with Benoit Pouliot pumping a shot past Marc-Andre Fleury seconds after Brassard’s shot. A review showed Brassard’s flip from in front beat Fleury cleanly.
Game 2 is Sunday.
Pouliot and Brad Richards gave the Rangers an early 2-0 lead. Henrik Lundqvist stopped 34 shots and stuffed a late Pittsburgh breakaway in the final seconds of regulation.
Former Dartmouth star Lee Stempniak and James Neal scored for the Penguins. Fleury made 24 saves, but was helpless on the winner.
Pittsburgh star Sidney Crosby was held without a goal for the 12th straight playoff game.
The Penguins have never lost a playoff series against the Rangers, rolling to victory in each of the four postseason meetings, including a 4-1 win in the Eastern Conference semifinals in 2008.
They split their four games during the regular season, all of them coming before the Olympic break.
The Penguins have looked sluggish in the ensuing three months while the Rangers played their best hockey down the stretch before needing seven games to dispatch Philadelphia in the opening round.
For a team that was supposed to be gassed playing for the third time in four days, the Rangers wasted little time jumping on the sloppy and surprisingly lifeless Penguins.
Pouliot gave New York the lead 5:04 into first period, capitalizing on a Pittsburgh turnover.