Rangers ride 3-goal third past Ducks

Kevin Hayes scored the go-ahead, short-handed goal with 40 seconds left Tuesday night as the New York Rangers rallied with three third-period goals to stun the visiting Anaheim Ducks 3-1 in an unlikely defensive duel.

The Ducks were on a power play generated when Filip Chytil was whistled for goalie interference with 2:35 left. Anaheim got just two shots before Vladislav Namestnikov corralled a loose puck and sent a pass up the ice to a streaking Hayes, who descended upon Chad Johnson on the breakaway. Johnson got a piece of Hayes’ shot but could not corral it as it trickled into the back of the net as right winger Pontus Aberg tried desperately to retrieve it.

Chytil added an empty-netter with 18.6 seconds left to cap a comeback that began when Namestnikov scored the tying goal just before the midway point of the third.

Backup goalie Alexander Georgiev, making his first start since Dec. 1, notched 14 saves as the Rangers ended a three-game losing streak and won for only the third time in 11 games (3-5-3).

Aberg was credited with the lone goal for the Ducks, who had a four-game winning streak snapped and lost for just the third time in the last 14 games (11-3-0).

Johnson, making his debut with the Ducks, recorded 21 saves. Claimed off waivers from the St. Louis Blues earlier this month, Johnson became the fourth goalie in NHL history to play for eight different teams.

After more than 34 scoreless minutes, the Ducks took the lead in fluky fashion on what amounted to an “own goal” by the Rangers. Aberg passed into the crease, where Ondrej Kase was descending upon Georgiev, but the puck ticked off New York center Mika Zibanejad and trickled into the net with 5:51 remaining in the second period.

The Rangers produced the first six shots of the third period and seven of the first eight before finally tying the game just before the midway point.

Brett Howden picked up the puck at the New York blue line, skated up the ice and began shuffling the puck as he reached the Ducks zone accompanied by Anaheim defenseman Brandon Montour. Howden threaded a pass under Montour and to Namestnikov, who got between Daniel Sprong and Hampus Lindholm and beat Johnson from point-blank range with 10:08 left.

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