Rangers top Flyers, lock up playoff spot

April 9, 2009 7:42:56 PM PDT
Henrik Lundqvist made 37 saves, Ryan Callahan had a goal and an assist and the New York Rangers clinched a playoff spot with a 2-1 victory over the Philadelphia Flyers on Thursday night. The Rangers' win over the Flyers also helped New Jersey, giving the Devils the Atlantic Division title.

Markus Naslund also scored for the Rangers, 8-1 in their last nine games at Madison Square Garden. Daniel Briere scored for the Flyers, and Martin Biron made 29 saves.

Callahan had a hand in both goals as the Rangers took a 2-0 lead in the first period.

New York scored 52 seconds in as the Rangers stormed the crease, chasing a loose puck. Naslund, who was credited with the goal, and Callahan took multiple swipes before the puck - and Biron - both slid into the net.

Referee Don VanMassenhoven pointed to the goal, signaling a score - a decision that was confirmed by a video review.

Callahan scored at 12:06, deflecting Derek Morris' blast from the right point.

Briere scored the only goal of the second period at 9:14. With Philadelphia on the power play, Briere flipped a shot over Lundqvist on what had effectively become a 5-on-3 advantage.

Rangers defenseman Paul Mara was severely hobbled after blocking a slap shot from Kimmo Timonen. Mara limped off the ice after the goal was scored but returned later in the period.

Early in the third, Lundqvist preserved the Rangers' one-goal lead with a spectacular diving glove stop on Daniel Carcillo.

The Flyers got a power play when Naslund was whistled for interference on Biron at 10:05. Philadelphia failed to capitalize but the Flyers did have a golden opportunity to even the score when Briere hit the crossbar with 4 minutes remaining.

Notes: Sean Avery and Nik Antropov were in the lineup for the Rangers even though they did not practice Wednesday. Antropov is still feeling the affects of a knee-to-knee collision suffered Saturday in the Rangers' 1-0 loss in Boston. ... The Rangers scratched LW Aaron Voros. The Flyers scratches were LW Riley Cote (finger injury) and D Ryan Parent. ... The teams will finish the regular season Sunday in Philadelphia.