UNIONDALE, N.Y. — Chris Kreider scored a power-play goal with 25 seconds left to give the New York Rangers a 3-2 win over the rival New York Islanders on Thursday night.
With the Islanders’ Derick Brassard off for cross-checking earlier in the final minute, Kreider was at the right side of the net and knocked in the rebound of Mika Zibanejad’s shot to give the Rangers their fourth win in five games.
Zibanejad and Tony DeAngelo also scored as the Rangers beat the Islanders for the fourth time in the last five meetings — and second time in four days — after losing 12 of the previous 13 matchups. Alexandar Georgiev stopped 38 shots to improve to 4-1-0 against the Islanders, who faced the Rangers at Nassau Coliseum for the first time in nearly five years.
Josh Bailey and Anthony Beauvillier scored for the Islanders, and Semyon Varlamov finished with 25 saves.
With the score tied 1-all and the Islanders on a power play, Jordan Eberle hit the crossbar 4:08 into the third period.
Seconds later, DeAngelo came out of the penalty box, grabbed a loose puck and skated up the left side on a 2-on-1 rush with Jesper Fast. DeAngelo beat Varlamov high to the blocker side for his 12th goal, giving the Rangers a 2-1 lead at 4:16.
The teams were skating 4-on-4 when Beauvillier tied it with 7:20 left. He fired the puck off the end boards, chased down a lively rebound and backhanded it past Georgiev for his 12th.
After getting outplayed in the opening period, the Rangers turned it around and controlled play in the second. They outshot the Islanders 12-5, holding them without a shot on goal for more than 14 minutes to start the period.
With the Rangers on their third power play, DeAngelo’s shot was stopped by Varlamov and knocked up in the air before it fell to the ice behind him. Ryan Pulock swooped in and attempted to keep the puck out of the net, with Zibanejad coming in from the left side and whacking at it.
Play continued for more than a minute until a stoppage. A review then determined Zibanejad did knock the puck across the plane of the goal line with 7:14 left in the second, tying the score with his 18th.
The Islanders didn’t get their first shot on goal in the second until Brock Nelson’s tip try with 5:44 left. The Islanders’ Leo Komarov hit the right post with 1:19 remaining in the period.
The Islanders outshot the Rangers 22-6 in the first, including a 16-1 margin over the final 10 1/2 minutes.
The Rangers’ best chance of the period was a try in front by Brett Howden with Varlamov down on his belly but the goalie kicked out his legs to keep the puck out at the 9:15 mark. It drew chants of “Var-ly! Var-ly!” from the Nassau Coliseum crowd.
Georgiev made a nice pad save on Eberle’s backhander. He also had a great stop on a slap shot by Anders Lee with 1:29 left in the first.
Tom Kuhnhackl then chased the puck into the right corner, took it away from Rangers defenceman Jacob Trouba and passed in front to Ross Johnston. Johnston sent it to Bailey at the top of the right circle and the veteran forward fired it past Georgiev for his 10th goal with 51 seconds remaining.
Islanders forward Casey Cizikas returned after a two-game absence due to a sore groin. He was hit by a puck last Saturday night against Boston. … The Rangers were back at Nassau Coliseum for the first time since a 2-1 victory on March 10, 2015. The Islanders began playing home games at Barclays Center the following season and won seven of the eight meetings in Brooklyn the last four years. … The Rangers won 6-2 at home Monday night in the first meeting of the season between the teams. They play again Tuesday night at Madison Square Garden and Feb. 25 back at Nassau Coliseum. … Rangers forward Artemi Panarin had an assist to give him 17 assists and 23 points in his last 10 games. … The Rangers improved to 10-3-0 against the Metropolitan Division. … Zibanejad has six goals and five assists in his last 10 games.
Rangers: Host Columbus on Sunday night.
Islanders: Host Washington on Saturday.
Follow Vin Cherwoo at https://www.twitter.com/VinCherwooAP
More AP NHL: https://www.apnews.com/NHL and https://www.twitter.com/AP_Sports
Vin A. Cherwoo, The Associated Press