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Rangers manage to win despite their slumping power play

Carolina Hurricanes' Jordan Staal collides with New York

Carolina Hurricanes' Jordan Staal collides with New York Rangers' Mats Zuccarello during the third period of an NHL game Saturday, March 21, 2015, in Raleigh, N.C Credit: AP / Karl B DeBlaker

RALEIGH, N.C. - The Rangers' slumping power play almost cost them Saturday night.

The Blueshirts came up empty on two power plays, dropping their recent mark to 0-for-18. Their second power play, when Eric Staal went off at 4:05 of the second period for slashing Dominic Moore, killed any momentum from three good even-strength shifts.

The first power play, at 13:59 of the first period, with Patrick Dwyer in the box for high-sticking, was short-circuited by Ryan McDonagh's takedown of Nathan Gerbe with 23 seconds left.

But it's not just the power play. In the last eight games, the Rangers have scored only 13 goals in regulation.

"We haven't played our best hockey in the past week," Mats Zuccarello said. "You go through stretches in the season, but at the same time, we win games."

Indeed, the Rangers are 7-1-1 in the last nine. "It shows we're a strong team," Zuccarello said. "We haven't been able to find the back of the net . . . We have a tough stretch coming up, so we need to figure it out."

New baby girl

Henrik and Therese Lundqvist's second daughter, who was born late Friday, is named Juli, according to a team spokesman. Their first daughter, who is 2, is named Charlise.

Blue notes

The Rangers, who won their fifth straight on the road, were credited with 46 hits, one from every player except Ryan McDonagh . . . The Rangers beat Carolina for the 16th time in 17 games and earned their sixth win in seven games overall . . . Moore led the Rangers with shots (four) and won eight of 14 faceoffs . . . Derek Stepan injured his left arm or wrist early in the third period and received treatment from trainer Jim Ramsay after he fell awkwardly in the Hurricanes' zone, but he returned a few minutes later.

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