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game recap

Penguins fail to take over first with OT loss to Rangers

Remain second in Metropolitan Division after Zibanejad wins it at 2:53

by Dan Rosen @drosennhl / NHL.com Senior Writer

NEW YORK -- The Pittsburgh Penguins couldn't hold off the New York Rangers' comeback and failed to take over first place in the Metropolitan Division with a 4-3 overtime loss at Madison Square Garden on Wednesday.

Mika Zibanejad scored his second goal of the game 2:53 into overtime to win it for the Rangers, who rallied from 2-0 and 3-2 down in the third period. New York hadn't won against a team in a playoff position since Feb. 11 (3-1 at the Winnipeg Jets).

The point helped the Penguins (40-26-5) tie the Washington Capitals, but the Capitals occupy first in the standings because they have two games in hand on the Penguins.

 

[WATCH: All Penguins vs. Rangers highlights]

 

"We had a great first and a great second, but we played so much with the puck that I think we got cocky," Penguins defenseman Kris Letang said. "We didn't manage the puck. We were careless. And it bit us. They came back in the game and they got the big point in overtime."

The Penguins were 0-for-3 on the power play, including 0-for-2 after they built a 2-0 lead in the second period. They were 1-for-3 on the penalty kill.

In addition, Evgeni Malkin couldn't convert on a penalty shot at 19:49 of the third period.

"We didn't play hard enough," Penguins coach Mike Sullivan said. "We got outplayed in the third period. Penalty kill didn't get it done. Our power play didn't get it done. And that's what happens.

"There's a fine line between winning and losing in this league and every team has something to play for and every team has good players," Sullivan said. "We didn't bring it in the third period with the level of urgency or the details, the attention to detail that we needed. The quality of the chances that we gave up were high and they scored."

Video: PIT@NYR: Kreider, Zibanejad connect for nifty PPG

Chris Kreider had four points on a goal and three assists, and Jesper Fast also scored for New York. The Rangers (32-32-7) scored three times in a span of 8:01 in the third period.

Alexandar Georgiev, who started ahead of Henrik Lundqvist for the second straight game, made 37 saves, including his save on Malkin's penalty shot. He has 78 saves on 84 shots in back-to-back wins against the Carolina Hurricanes on Monday and the Penguins.

The Rangers are eight points behind the Columbus Blue Jackets for the second wild card into the Stanley Cup Playoffs from the Eastern Conference.

"We're battling," Rangers coach Alain Vigneault said. "We're competing."

Carl Hagelin, Bryan Rust and Riley Sheahan scored for the Penguins. Casey DeSmith made 29 saves.

Video: PIT@NYR: Hagelin takes the lead on perfect wraparound

The Penguins had a 2-0 lead on goals by Rust (1:53) and Sheahan (2:48) in the second period, but the Rangers responded in the third with goals from Kreider on the power play at 8:42 and Fast to tie the game at 2-2 with 5:32 left.

Hagelin gave Pittsburgh a 3-2 lead with a wraparound goal with 4:19 remaining, but Zibanejad scored on the power play 62 seconds later to tie the game 3-3. Kreider made a move around Letang and set up Zibanejad with a crossing pass for a tap-in from the right post.

Malkin was awarded the penalty shot with 11 seconds remaining because the officials ruled that Georgiev knocked the net off its moorings intentionally in the final two minutes. Georgiev, who said he didn't do it on purpose, made a right pad save after trying to stop Malkin with a poke check.

"I just wanted to be patient with him, wait for his maybe first, maybe second, third move," Georgiev said. "Wait for his [move], not go down really early. I think I was patient with that."

Zibanejad scored the winner after getting a backhanded pass from Kreider between the circles. He carried the puck through the right circle and beat DeSmith with a short-side shot.

"We totally ruined it," Letang said. "We had a great first two periods and we got too confident and didn't respect them enough. They came back in the third and we were sloppy."

Video: PIT@NYR: Fast ties it on a sly redirection in front

 

Goal of the game

Zibanejad's goal at 2:53 of overtime.

Video: PIT@NYR: Zibanejad nets OT winner for 100th goal

 

Save of the game

Georgiev's save on Sidney Crosby 1:33 into overtime.

Video: PIT@NYR: Georgiev shuts down Crosby in overtime

 
Highlight of the game

Georgiev's save on Malkin's penalty shot at 19:49 of the third period.

Video: PIT@NYR: Georgiev makes save on Malkin's penalty shot

 

They said it

"At this time of year you've got to make sure you play a 60-minute hockey game. You can't play 40 minutes and think you're going to win." -- Penguins coach Mike Sullivan

 

"It's a little daunting. Your heart kind of drops when you find out it's a penalty shot, but [Georgiev] did an unbelievable job. He's been so good for us. He battles. It's easy to play in front of a guy like that." -- Rangers forward Chris Kreider

 

Need to know

Kreider scored as many as four points for the first time in his 370-game NHL career. He also established a single-game NHL career high with three assists. … Zibanejad's overtime goal was his 100th in the NHL. He joined Derek Stepan (2015) and Theo Fleury (2001) as the only Rangers to score the tying goal in the final five minutes and the winner in overtime. … Rust played after missing the past two games with a concussion.

 

What's next

Penguins: At the Montreal Canadiens on Thursday (7:30 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TSN2, RDS, ATTSN-PT, NHL.TV)

Rangers: At the St. Louis Blues on Saturday (8 p.m. ET; FS-MW, MSG, NHL.TV)

 

Video: Zibanejad, Kreider power Rangers past Pens in OT, 4-3

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