National Hockey League
- BB&T Center PUCK DROP -
NY Rangers Rangers
ML: NYR -133
Final (OT)
Florida Panthers
ML: FLA +120
Goalie Performance
Henrik Lundqvist
#30 G Henrik Lundqvist
Roberto Luongo
#1 G Roberto Luongo
0.907 SV% 39 SV
0.839 SV% 26 SV
Scoring Leaders
Rick Nash
#61 LW Rick Nash Goals Assists 3 0
Mats Zuccarello
#36 RW Mats Zuccarello Goals Assists 1 2
Viktor Stalberg
#25 LW Viktor Stalberg Goals Assists 1 0
Aleksander Barkov
#16 C Aleksander Barkov Goals Assists 1 1
Jussi Jokinen
#36 LW Jussi Jokinen Goals Assists 1 1
Aaron Ekblad
#5 D Aaron Ekblad Goals Assists 0 2

SUNRISE, Fla. -- New York Rangers center Rick Nash hopes to put his season's struggles behind him.

Nash had a hat trick, including the game-winner on the power play in overtime, as the Rangers beat the Florida Panthers 5-4 at BB&T Center on Saturday.

Center Mats Zuccarello and left winger Viktor Stalberg also scored for New York (15-3-2). It was the Rangers' seventh straight win over Florida and New York has now won 11 out of 13 meetings dating back to December 2011.

Zuccarello and defenseman Ryan McDonagh each had two assists, and centers Oscar Lindberg, J.T. Miller and Derick Brassard and defenseman Dan Boyle each had one.

Center Nick Bjugstad, left winger Jussi Jokinen, center Aleksander Barkov and right winger Jaromir Jagr scored for Florida (8-8-4).

Panthers center Brandon Pirri, Jokinen and defenseman Aaron Ekblad had a pair of assists. Right winger Reilly Smith also had one.

New York goaltender Henrik Lundqvist made 39 saves. Florida's Roberto Luongo stopped 26 shots.

With Florida on the penalty kill because of too many men on the ice, Nash beat Panthers goaltender Luongo with the game-winning goal 2:01 into overtime to lift the Rangers to their 10th win in their last 11 games.

"I knew (Mats Zuccarello) was in front and I could get it through the defenseman's legs. I just shot it and hoped for the best," said Nash of his first hat trick this year and seventh of his career.

Brassard and Boyle assisted on the winner.

Nash scored at 11:08 of the first period by lifting a shot over Luongo's glove from below the right circle off a diagonal pass from McDonagh.

The goal, Nash's third, came shortly after New York killed off a 5-on-3 power play for the Panthers and gave the Rangers a 1-0 lead at the break.

Zuccarello also assisted on the play.

Nash added his second at 13:22 with the scored tied 1-1 by getting possession of the puck near his own blue line and racing shoulder-to-shoulder with Bjugstad.

Nash powered his way past the 6-foot-6 Bjugstad and beat Luongo on the short side for a 2-1 New York lead.

Zuccarello had the lone assist on the goal.

"As I struggle to find my numbers, I just try to make a power move, hold on to pucks and really try to simplify. It seems to work out," Nash said.

Rangers coach Alain Vigneault said he hopes the performance can be a breakout for his star center and added that Lundqvist gave the Rangers a great opportunity to win after losing late in Tampa on Thursday.

"We didn't play real well. They say never to critique a win, but our goaltender kept us in it. And there's no doubt Rick Nash played one of his better games this year," Vigneault said.

"Time will tell. Nash had a good game tonight, and we'll see if he can follow it up."

Florida scored two goals 39 seconds apart to erase New York's 4-2 lead. Both goals were scored with Luongo out on the bench and the Panthers with an extra attacker.

Barkov scored Florida's second power-play goal at 17:32 to cut New York's lead to 4-3.

After Ekblad's shot rang off the crossbar, Jagr whipped a shot past Lundqvist at 18:11.

Florida's Smith was immediately dragged down on a breakaway attempt seven seconds later, but he failed to convert the penalty shot past a sprawling Lundqvist.

"We had our chances. I had a couple on the power play. It's a tough game to lose, but we battled through the adversity," Bjugstad said.

Jokinen scored a power-play goal at 17:57, his fifth, when he redirected Pirri's blast from above the right circle to tie it at 2-2. Smith assisted on the goal.

Florida coach Gerard Gallant was pleased with his team rallying from two one-goal deficits and one very late two-goal deficit.

"There was no quit. I was really proud of our guys tonight because we played one of the fastest teams in the league and we kept up with them and we probably pushed the pace more than they did tonight," Gallant said.

Added Jagr, whose 730 goals put him one behind Marcel Dionne for fourth all-time: "It's the way we should play. We've got enough good players to play that way all the time."

In the third period, Zuccarello took a long stretch pass from McDonagh after the defenseman had intercepted a pass on a Florida rush. Zuccarello deked Luongo to the right then slipped the puck past the Panthers' goalie for his 10th goal and a 3-2 lead at 10:16.

Stalberg scored his second from the left circle at 12:14 off a pass from Lindberg to make it 4-2.

NOTES: New York scratched D Dylan McIlrath and RW Emerson Etem. ... The team's 14 wins in the first 19 games was a franchise record. ... The Rangers return to New York for games against Nashville and Montreal on Monday and Wednesday. ... G Henrik Lundqvist made his eighth start in New York's last 10 games, while Florida's Roberto Luongo started his seventh straight contest. ... The Panthers scratched LWs Shawn Thornton and Garrett Wilson plus D Dmitry Kulikov, who missed his third game due to a knee injury suffered in Tampa in a 5-4 shootout win last Saturday. ... The game was the third of a five-game homestand for Florida, which hosts the Los Angeles Kings on Monday and the New York Islanders on Friday.
Top Game Performances
NY Rangers   Florida
Rick Nash 3 Points Aleksander Barkov 2
Rick Nash 3 Goals Aleksander Barkov 1
Mats Zuccarello 2 Assists Aaron Ekblad 2
Rick Nash 1 Power Play Goals Aleksander Barkov 1
N/A Short Handed Goals N/A
Henrik Lundqvist .907 Save Percentage Roberto Luongo .839
Henrik Lundqvist 39 Saves Roberto Luongo 26
Team Stats Summary
Team Shots Goals Power Play Penalty Kill Penalty Mins Face Offs Won
NY Rangers 31 5 1-2 4-6 14 34
Florida 43 4 2-6 1-2 6 45
Upcoming Games
  • Florida will play their next game at home against Los Angeles. The Panthers have a W/L % of .375 after a win and .417 after a loss.
  • NY Rangers will play their next game at home against Nashville. The Rangers have a W/L % of .800 after a win and .600 after a loss.