Sean Avery’s wraparound try from the left post slid across to Brandon Prust, who beat Cam Ward for a 1-0 lead. Prust’s goal, at 2:08 of the first, the second straight game that the Rangers have scored first.
Vinny Prospal hit the crossbar minutes later and on the next shift, Eric Staal grabbed a bouncer off the lively endboards and was robbed by a diving henrik Lundqvist, who then made some sparking saves on a dangerous Canes power play with Prospal off for a slash.
Jay Harrison took a short pass from Brandon Sutter just outside the blue line when Prospal overskated the puck and bore down on Lundqvist. His wrister hit the left post, bounced behind Lundqvist and off him for the tie at 16:35. Lundqvist later stopped a shorthanded breakaway by Erik Cole and the period ended with the Rangers on a power play, leading shots 18-12.