The Rangers, who scored four goals in the first period on Friday and received a spotless 30-save performance from goaltender Henrik Lundqvist, are also only two points back of the seventh-place Boston Bruins and four behind sixth-place Montreal.
“I think we played a simple road game,” Lundqvist said. “But now it’s very important that we just stay focused on what we have to do and not the end result of having to make the playoffs. We have to keep breaking it down to every game, every period, every shift.”
Lundqvist was forced to earn his keep later in the period, however. When the Lightning finally produced sustained pressure in the Rangers’ end, Lundqvist was there to keep the home team off of the scoreboard.
At 12:35 of the second Lundqvist stoned Brandon Bochenski from point-blank range and then followed with a sensational glove save on Mattias Ohlund’s rebound try. Following the ensuing faceoff, Lundqvist stuffed Nate Thompson who was alone in front.
Later in the second period, Lundqvist denied Martin St. Louis on a 2-on-1 shorthanded rush with Vincent Lecavalier.
The shutout was Lundqvist’s fourth of the season and 24th of his NHL career.
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