NEW YORK (AP) — Timely goals by Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin extended the New York Rangers’ slow start to the season.
Crosby tied the score with less than a minute remaining in regulation, Evgeni Malkin put in the winner 58 seconds into overtime and the Pittsburgh Penguins beat the struggling Rangers 5-4 on Tuesday night.
“We kind of had some ups and downs in the game,” Crosby said. “Started off good, lose the lead, give it up there late and then climb our way back. Those games don’t happen every night but it’s a good test when they happen and we responded the right way.”
Patric Hornqvist, Phil Kessel and ex-Ranger Carl Hagelin also scored for the two-time defending Stanley Cup champions, who handed New York (1-5-1) its fourth consecutive loss.
Rangers captain Ryan McDonagh turned the puck over in overtime and Phil Kessel set up Malkin for the game-winning goal. Just before that, the Rangers iced the puck, leading to a faceoff in their zone.
Michael Grabner put New York ahead 4-3 when he and David Desharnais completed a nifty give-and-go at the 8-minute mark of the third period.
Desharnais, Pavel Buchnevich and J.T. Miller scored in a span of 2:30 as the Rangers got three straight goals early in the second to take a 3-2 lead.
“We gave ourselves a chance going into the third period all tied up,” defenseman Marc Staal said. “We got the goal we needed, we just weren’t able to close it out. It’s not easy for us to get a win.”
Penguins goalie Matt Murray and counterpart Henrik Lundqvist each made 28 saves in the first of four meetings this season between the division rivals.
Crosby scored with 56 seconds left in the third period when he put a puck between Lundqvist’s pads. It was Crosby’s fifth consecutive game at Madison Square Garden with a goal.
Kessel scored on the game’s first shot just 43 seconds in. Hagelin made it 2-0 when his wrist shot sailed over Lundqvist’s glove. Olli Maata extended his point streak to six games (one goal, five assists) with an assist on the second goal.
In the second period, Desharnais snapped a shot past Murray to cut the margin in half. It was Desharnais’ first goal for the Rangers since signing a one-year contract this summer.
Shortly after that, Crosby took a double-minor for high-sticking Jimmy Vesey. The Rangers took full advantage of the opportunity as they scored on both chances.
Buchnevich got his first of the season and then a minute later, Miller launched a snap shot past Murray to give the Rangers a 3-2 lead. Miller also had two assists in his first three-point game of the season.
“We’ve got to do a better job of reeling our guys in and making sure that we maintain an element of discipline so that we don’t get in that chance-for-chance game,” Penguins coach Mike Sullivan said.
Hornqvist tied it late in the second period on a power play with Rangers forward Chris Kreider in the box. Kreider was penalized for cross-checking, which abruptly ended a two-man advantage for New York.
“They really had a chance to capitalize and we had some big blocks there,” Hornqvist said, referring to the 5-on-3 situation. “We’ll take every point we can right now, but we still need to be a little better than that.”
Malkin went to the dressing room with 14:17 remaining in the third period. Shortly before that, he scrapped with Rangers defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk. They were given matching two-minute roughing penalties.
NOTES: Murray surpassed Penguins general manager Jim Rutherford for sole possession of 10th place on the team’s career wins list with 45. … The Rangers scratched forward Paul Carey, D Nick Holden and D Steven Kampfer. … The Penguins scratched forwards Josh Archibald and Scott Wilson. … Pittsburgh placed Matt Hunwick on injured reserve with a concussion. The defenseman was injured Monday at practice. … D Ian Cole returned to the lineup after missing the previous three games with a facial injury. … The Penguins also reassigned D Chris Summers to Wilkes-Barre/Scranton of the American Hockey League.
Penguins: Visit the Florida Panthers on Friday.
Rangers: Host the New York Islanders on Thursday.
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