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NHL

Rangers grind it out, win shootout

– Nothing about the first period suggested the New York Rangers were about to snap their three-game losing streak.

Back at home Monday night after a four-game trip that concluded with losses at Buffalo, Winnipeg and Pittsburgh, the Rangers were sluggish early against the Carolina Hurricanes and started the second period in a familiar hole.

But Derek Stepan scored the tying goal, and Henrik Lundqvist was perfect in net the rest of the way as the Rangers outlasted the Hurricanes 2-1 in a shootout.

Lundqvist allowed a goal to Eric Staal in the final minute of the first, but no other pucks got past him – including two shootout attempts.

Now the Rangers will look to build on this win as they get set to face the Devils in New Jersey on Tuesday. Carolina and New Jersey are part of a four-team logjam with 32 points in the Eastern Conference – two more than the ninth-place Rangers.

“It means nothing if we don’t go into Jersey and play the same way,” captain Ryan Callahan said of the Rangers, who have scored only three goals in four games. “We have to go to Jersey and show that kind of effort we did in the second and third, and pucks will start going in for us, too.

“There’s no concern in this room. We know we have guys in here that can score goals, and it’s going to come.”

LIGHTNING 4, FLYERS 2: In Tampa, Fla., Teddy Purcell scored the tiebreaking goal midway through the third period to lift Tampa Bay. Purcell’s in-close deflection at 9:25 of the third came shortly after the Lightning killed off a short-handed situation.

STARS 4, FLAMES 3: In Dallas, Loui Eriksson scored twice and Dallas held on for the victory. Eric Nystrom and Erik Cole also scored and Ray Whitney added two assists for Dallas, which snapped a four-game skid (0-3-1).

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