RALEIGH, N.C. -- Henrik Lundqvist made 43 saves, and Vladislav Namestnikov broke a tie in the third period in the New York Rangers' 2-1 win against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena on Tuesday.
Conner Brickley also scored for New York (26-25-8), which pulled within nine points of the second wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Eastern Conference.
"Tough building, division rival, and we knew that it was going to be tough but we got it done," Rangers center Mika Zibanejad said. "We did enough. We got that (first) goal and I think we shut it down."
[WATCH: All Rangers vs. Hurricanes highlights]
Jordan Martinook scored for Carolina (31-23-6), which was denied a fourth straight win and remained one point behind the Columbus Blue Jackets for the second wild card in the East. Curtis McElhinney made 24 saves.
"That was our best game we've probably played in (the past) seven or eight," Hurricanes coach Rod Brind'Amour said. "It just didn't work out. So if we come with that mindset and we play that hard, I think we will be where we want to be at the end of the year."
Namestnikov scored on the rebound of Jimmy Vesey's shot to give the Rangers a 2-1 lead at 6:10 of the third period. It was Namestnikov's third goal in his past three games, and it came two seconds after a tripping penalty on Hurricanes forward Brock McGinn expired.
Video: NYR@CAR: Namestnikov buries rebound from the slot
"It's tough when you're in a 1-1 game; you don't want to get into any penalty trouble," McElhinney said. "It was unfortunate that it maybe took (away) a little momentum."
Martinook gave the Hurricanes a 1-0 lead at 9:53 of the second period when he redirected Dougie Hamilton's pass from the right circle before putting in his own rebound.
"I thought Dougie was going to shoot it, and I was just trying to beat my guy to the net," Martinook said. "I missed on the first one and luckily got the second one."
Brickley's first goal of the season tied the game 1-1 at 10:40. McElhinney made an initial save on Filip Chytil's shot, but the rebound went in off Brickley while he drove to the net.
"I'm just keeping things simple," Brickley said. "Just north-south hockey, trying to play physical and bring high energy and see what happens."
Video: NYR@CAR: Brickley deflects rebound past McElhinney
Lundqvist preserved the win when he made a back door save against Justin Williams with 1:37 remaining.
"I had to improvise a little bit," said Lundqvist, who is 30-12-1 all-time against Carolina. "I was caught. I didn't feel like I had time to get a good push, so I kind of went down, then up with the blocker. It worked."
Williams had a game-high 10 shots on goal.
"I just tried to catch it and get it up high," Williams said. "I think a defenseman got a stick on it, but [Lundqvist] was right there and I wasn't able to get to the rebound on it. We certainly had a lot of chances to win."
They said it
"Some teams, the matchup just works for you for some reason. I have some teams (where) it works the other way. It's hard to explain sometimes how it works for you as a group and personally. The big thing is not to overthink it, good or bad." -- Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist on his success against the Hurricanes
Video: Clutch Performance: Lundqvist stops 43 shots in win
"[Lundqvist] was good, [McElhinney] was good, but [Lundqvist] made a few more saves especially at the end. It was a tough loss because we played well enough. A good 60 minutes, but we just didn't score." -- Hurricanes coach Rod Brind'Amour
Need to know
The Rangers are 6-0-1 in the games following their past seven regulation losses. They are 27-6-0 in their past 33 games against the Hurricanes. … Lundqvist has allowed two goals or fewer in his past eight games against Carolina. … The Hurricanes have outshot opponents in 120 of 180 regulation periods this season. … McElhinney and Petr Mrazek have combined for a 1.19 goals-against average and a .960 save percentage over the past six games.
Rangers: Host the Minnesota Wild on Thursday (7 p.m. ET; MSG, FS-N, FS-WI, NHL.TV)
Hurricanes: At the Florida Panthers on Thursday (7 p.m. ET; FS-F, FS-SE, NHL.TV)
Video: Lundqvist's 43 saves lifts Rangers past Hurricanes