The Rangers won 5-2 and snapped a five-game losing streak. Callahan netted two goals, and Gaborik extended his league-leading goals scored tally. Lundqvist was strong all night, particularly early when the Rangers were outshot 14-4 after one period, yet led 2-0.
Three more games left between these two this season, the next one nine days from now at the Garden (7 p.m., Dec. 26). Enjoy your night.
Of course, spoke a little too soon. Islanders' Nielsen cuts the lead to 5-2 just after the five-minute mark, Islanders getting pressure up top with 3:51 to go.
Rangers in control with about five minutes to play. Losing streak likely to end at five, Tortorella likely not to curse too much after the game.
Rangers take a 5-1 lead and it's becoming a statement game. Anisimov scores his first goal since Nov. 23, 13 minutes to go in the game. Impressive game for the Rangers, particularly considering their slow start (even though they had a 2-0 lead at the end of the first). Islanders still lead in shots, 31-21.
Rangers have a 5-on-3 advantage with 16:40 to go. Gaborik scores with 1:35 of power play time left, 4-1. Twenty-fourth goal for Gaborik.
Rangers with a power play two minutes in on a delay of game call. Callahan already has two scors with a man advantage. Gaborik tips it off the post.
Thirteen saves for Roloson, 27 for Lundqvist entering the third period. Rangers need to keep taking advantage of their opportunities.
Drury misses to the left with 6:48 to go in the second.
Islanders get their first goal seconds later, MacDonald scores his first goal from the left side. 3-1.
Lundqvist trips, leaves an empty net and gets a break — Thompson misses wide right, inexplicably. 10:34 to go.
Right out of the gate, Callahan scores again on a power play to make it 3-0 at 19:33, Gaborik again in on the play. Looks like the Rangers offense has finally come alive.
Rangers were outshot 14-4 after one period, Lundqvist deserves a lot of the credit for 2-0 lead. The Rangers will have to maintain possession better in the second.
Guess that lineup change's helping. Drury makes it 2-0 on their third shot of the first period with 2:04 to go. Islanders still might be outplaying the Rangers, but this is the start they needed after last night.
Rangers outshot 13-2 through first 11 minutes.
Callahan scores in front of the net early in the power play for 1-0 lead with 6:54 to go. He has three power play goals in his last four games.
Rangers with their second power play of the game at 7:20, they're 0-for-6 against the Isles on the power play this year.
Lundqvist with 12 saves through the first 11 minutes, makes a nice stop on a Moulson attempt right in front of the goal.
Isles get early power play, not the start the Rangers needed. Henrik Lundqvist with eight saves less than five minutes in, no shots for the Rangers yet ... Callahan draws a penalty, sets up a 4-on-4 with about 13 minutes to go.
Even if the losing continues, it'd be hard to imagine the Rangers playing with any less moxie. So maybe John Tortorella's decision to bench Ales Kotalik and Wade Redden tonight are the friendly reminder everyone needs.
That, or the "Fire Sather" chants that sparked up in force last night during a 2-1 loss to the Islanders at the Garden last night.
Entering tonight's 7 p.m. rematch in Uniondale, the Rangers (14-16-3) are in danger of dropping a sixth straight game overall and their third to the Islanders (13-14-7) this season.
Steve Zipay reported Thursday that both Redden and Kotalik owned up to their poor play, but were neither happy nor in agreement with a sideline seat. Tortorella was angered to the point of profanity after last night's loss.
Chris Drury said outright the Rangers would have a "different start tonight." But it hasn't been much different since a 7-4 win over Columbus on Nov. 23, when the Rangers started their current 2-6-2 stretch. They've been outscored 2-to-1 in that span. In 17 of their last 21, the Rangers have scored two goals or fewer.
Add to it that Rangers misplays allowed the Isles their first goal last night and that they were playing an Isles team that was coming off its worst loss of the season, and there's a lot to make up for.
Oh, by the way, no NHL debut tonight for goalie Chad Johnson. Zipay reported earlier that Tortorella "thought about it" though.
Evan Drellich here to take you through the game.