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NHL: New Jersey 5, New York Rangers 3

May 23, 2012 at 11:20 PM   |   Comments

NEW YORK, May 23 (UPI) -- Ryan Carter's go-ahead goal with 4:24 to play Wednesday sent New Jersey to a 5-3 win over the New York Rangers and within reach of the Stanley Cup Finals.

The Devils took a 3-2 lead in the Eastern Conference championship series and will earn a chance to play for the NHL title if they defeat the Rangers Friday in Newark.

New Jersey stormed to a 3-0 lead during the first half of the first period, but the Rangers battled back against goaltender Martin Brodeur and tied it 17 seconds into the third on a slap shot by Marian Gaborik.

Brodeur and New York's Henrik Lundqvist then engaged in a tense goaltending battle until Carter scored his third goal of the playoffs.

Zach Parise added an empty-net goal with 32 seconds remaining in regulation.

Lundqvist gave up four goals on just 16 shots while Brodeur made 25 saves.

New Jersey's early goals came from Stephen Gionta, Patrick Elias and Travis Zajac.

Brandon Prust began the New York comeback with a backhander with 4:19 to go in the opening period and Ryan Callahan tallied early in the second by tipping in a shot.

Brodeur recorded the 110th playoff victory of his career.

The winner of this series will take on the Los Angeles Kings for the Stanley Cup. The Kings have lost only twice in the playoffs and have reached the finals as the No. 8 seed in the Western Conference.

© 2012 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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