Rangers douse Flames in final two seconds of OT

New York defenceman Ryan McDonagh scored with two seconds remaining in overtime Thursday night giving the Rangers a 3-2 victory over the Calgary Flames.

New York Rangers 3 Calgary Flames 2

CALGARY — New York defenceman Ryan McDonagh scored with two seconds remaining in overtime Thursday night giving the Rangers a 3-2 victory over the Calgary Flames.

With a crowd in front of goaltender Henrik Karlsson, Dan Girardi shot the puck wide off the end boards and it caromed out the other side where McDonagh was there to bury it in the open side for his second goal of the season.

Marian Gaborik and former Flame Brandon Prust also scored for New York (2-1-2). The Rangers have won the first two games of their four-game road trip through Western Canada. They play in Edmonton on Saturday night.

Brad Richards had an assist and has now picked up a point in each of his first five games as a Ranger.

Jarome Iginla and Mark Giordano scored for Calgary (2-3-1). The Flames are 1-0-1 two games into their season-high six-game homestand.

After a four-goal first period, both teams were blanked over the final 45 minutes with both teams taking turns in the spotlight.

Flames coach Brent Sutter, staying true to his commitment to lessen Miikka Kiprusoff’s workload this season, went with Karlsson in net. This coming on the heels of Kiprusoff’s superb 25-save performance in Calgary’s 2-1 win over Edmonton on Tuesday night. Karlsson gave up five goals on 35 shots in his first start, a 5-2 loss to St. Louis on Oct. 10.

In his second start of the season, the six-foot-six Swede was much better making 26 stops.

In the third period with the Rangers pressuring around the Flames’ net, he thwarted Prust from the side of the net after he was set up by Brian Boyle.

Karlsson was especially sharp in overtime making five stops before the winner by McDonagh.

Henrik Lundqvist, coming off a 40-shot shutout of Vancouver in his last start, made 33 saves for New York. His best stop came on a first period rebound when he denied Tom Kostopolous of the go-ahead goal, stretching across the crease to get his arm on the dangerous shot from the slot.

Lundqvist also turned in back-to-back saves with the game tied in the third, After stopping Jay Bouwmeester’s dangerous drive from the wing, he jabbed out his pad to deny Curtis Glencross on the rebound.

Calgary got a power play with just three minutes left in the third period when Jeff Woywitka was called for delay of game, the culmination of a stretch of enormous pressure in the Rangers zone by the line of Glencross, Olli Jokinen, and Lee Stempniak.

However, despite hemming the Rangers in for most of the man advantage and generating a couple of shots, they could not score.

Calgary outshot New York 12-7 in the third.

New York entered the night as the lone NHL team without a power play goal but that distinction was put to rest less than five minutes into the game.

On its first power play of the night, New York controlled the puck in the Flames end for all 37 seconds it took for Gaborik to get into the open and snap a 30-footer past Karlsson, making it 1-0 for the Rangers at 4:53.

Calgary responded less than a minute later with Iginla steering in Alex Tanguay’s centring pass.

The Rangers restored its one-goal lead short-handed at 13:42 of the first when Boyle knocked Jay Bouwmeester off the puck deep in the Flames end and centred a pass to Prust who scored his second goal.

The Flames again struck back, this time just over two minutes later. Iginla and Giordano worked a nice give-and-go with Giordano zipping a shot into the top corner behind Lundvist.

In a interesting subplot, the Pengrowth Saddledome crowd of 19,289 spent the entire night lustily booing Rangers rookie Tim Erixon whenever he touched the puck.

Erixon, a first-round draft pick of the Flames in 2009, refused to sign with the Flames forcing Flames general manager Jay Feaster to trade the defenceman this past summer in a deal that brought Roman Horak and a pair of second round draft picks to the Flames. Horak is with the Flames but was a healthy scratch.

Notes: The assist for Richards on Gaborik’s goal was No. 500 of his career… The five-game points streak for Calgary C Olli Jokinen came to an end… Calgary LW Rene Bourque played in career game No. 400… Lundqvist was making his 36th consecutive start for New York including last year’s four playoff games. His last night off was Feb. 11, 2011… The seven straight road games for New York to begin the season is the longest such stretch to begin the season in team history.