NEW YORK – Ryan Malone scored in the 11th round of a shootout, and the Tampa Bay Lightning bounced back from giving up a goal late in the third period to beat the New York Rangers 4-3 on Thursday night.
Rangers rookie Derek Stepan scored for the third straight game to tie it with 8:42 left in regulation, but New York couldn't finish the comeback. The shootout was tied 2-2 after three rounds, and the next 15 shooters were denied until Malone won it with a drive that caromed in off the post.
The Rangers held a 17-7 shots advantage in the third period, but were outshot 3-0 in overtime.
Steven Stamkos scored his 27th goal, and Martin St. Louis added a goal and assist for the Lightning, who won for the fifth win in six games.
Stamkos, who along with St. Louis was kept off the score sheet in Wednesday night's 2-1 overtime loss at the New York Islanders, quickly regained his scoring touch by netting his sixth goal in eight games. St. Louis put Tampa Bay ahead 1-0 just 2 minutes in and helped set up Stamkos' tying goal late in the first period.
Vincent Lecavalier put the Lightning back ahead in the second. Tampa Bay has earned at least a point in seven straight games (5-0-2). Dan Ellis, who made 34 saves, has started three straight games since fellow goalie Mike Smith injured a knee.
Ruslan Fedotenko and Alex Frolov scored 12 seconds apart in the first to give the Rangers a brief lead and prompt Tampa Bay coach Guy Boucher to burn his lone timeout. Henrik Lundqvist stopped 21 shots for the Rangers, who were missing top-line forward Marian Gaborik because of a groin injury.
The Rangers, playing for the first time since a 4-1 loss at Philadelphia on Saturday, have dropped two in a row (0-1-1) following a three-game winning streak.
St. Louis did all the work himself on the Lightning's first goal. He stole the puck in the neutral zone and skated in alone to score his 14th.
Fedotenko got that one back at 11:16, and Frolov cleaned up a rebound of Artem Anisimov's shot in front to make it 2-1 at 11:28.
The Rangers then gave up the next two goals to relinquish the lead.
Stamkos got the comeback started late in the first when St. Louis turned a turnover by defenseman Dan Girardi into a goal. St. Louis got the puck in the left circle and made a slick pass behind his back to Stamkos, who zipped a shot past Lundqvist to make it 2-2 with 1:06 left in the period.
Girardi took a tripping penalty 26 seconds into the second, but after the Rangers killed it, they controlled the puck for large stretches. Despite the puck possession and pressure in the Lightning end — including a prime, short-handed chance — the Rangers couldn't go back in front.
The Lightning grabbed a 3-2 lead with 5:18 remaining in the second. Pavel Kubina slid the puck from the right corner along the goal line to Lecavalier, who used his quick stick to deflect it inside the right post for his fourth goal on Tampa Bay's fourth shot of the frame.
NOTES: The Rangers outshot the Lightning 10-7 in each of the first two periods. ... Lecavalier scored his first goal in five games after missing 15 because of a broken right hand. ... St. Louis has four goals and 10 assists in his last nine games. ... Rangers LW Mats Zuccarello, recalled from Connecticut of the AHL on Wednesday, made his NHL debut in place of Gaborik. New York coach John Tortorella said he expects Gaborik to play Monday against the New York Islanders.