March 7 (UPI) -- TAMPA, Fla. -- While the New York Rangers wanted to see their battle level pick up, the Tampa Bay Lightning continue to fight for a playoff spot and rise up the Eastern Conference standings.
In a playoff-intense matchup, however, goaltenders Antti Raanta and Andrei Vasilevskiy proved to be right at the forefront.
Mika Zibanejad scored on a breakaway 3:56 into overtime to give the Rangers a 1-0 win over Tampa Bay on Monday, New York's second victory in six games.
Raanta (13-5-0) stopped all 38 shots he faced for his third shutout of the season and seventh of his career.
"What you saw tonight was great goaltending at both ends," New York coach Alain Vigneault said.
Vasilevskiy (14-14-5) finished with 33 saves, though his three-game winning streak was snapped. Tampa Bay, meanwhile, improved to 8-2-3 in the past 13 games and moved within two points of the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference with 16 games remaining.
"We did everything we could to win that game, but tip your hat to both goaltenders," Lightning coach Jon Cooper said. "I know everybody's screaming for more scoring in the league, but that was a pretty darn exciting 0-0 game."
In a game that started as if it were a replay of the 2015 Eastern Conference finals, post-whistle scrums and intense play seemingly happened on every other shift. That was accented by a lengthy neutral-zone bout between Tampa Bay's Luke Witkowski and New York's Tanner Glass, who was playing his first NHL game in nearly a year.
"A lot of credit to Luke and Glass for that tilt. That really got everybody going," Lightning defenseman Victor Hedman said.
But it was the play of both goaltenders that really set the tone and kept it up all game, with each netminder coming up with key saves at big moments. That proved to be the case all the way up until the final minute of regulation.
Vasilevskiy showed his mettle when Rick Nash, who avoided a hip check from Hedman along the boards, cut in in to the post near the right circle for a chance in tight, only to have Vasilevskiy hold his ground and make a stop with 58 seconds left.
Then Raanta managed to get just enough of his glove on a shot from Nikita Kucherov with 15 seconds left to keep the game scoreless through regulation.
"I was a little bit lucky that it hit the glove and went over," Raanta said. "When I didn't hear anything, I was sure that it went in. But it stayed out, and we got the two points."
The win was delivered by Zibanejad after a back-and-forth overtime went the Rangers' way. After Tampa Bay's Ondrej Palat hit the post on a chance, Hedman sent an errant pass back toward the point, but Jonathan Drouin had moved closer to the boards. The puck slid free to the other side of the ice, where Ryan McDonagh collected it and fed Zibanjad, who raced in alone and snapped a wrist shot high to the glove side to win the game.
"When you get those kind of opportunities, you want to make sure you take advantage of it," Zibanejad said. "Glad I was able to do that. It's three-on-three, one chance one way usually opens up another chance the other way. It was a great pass, and I'm glad (the shot) went in."
-- Tampa Bay scratched C Greg McKegg and RW J.T. Brown.
-- Lightning D Luke Witkowski took shifts at forward on the fourth line for the second consecutive game.
-- New York C Derek Stepan appeared in his 500th career game.
-- Rangers LW Tanner Glass, who was recalled from AHL Hartford, appeared in his first NHL regular game since April 9, 2016.
-- RW Michael Grabner, New York's leading goal-scorer, missed his third consecutive game with a hip injury but hopes to be ready to return Thursday at Carolina.
-- Lightning LW Yanni Gourde was called up Monday morning and was in the lineup Monday.
-- Tampa Bay RW Nikita Kucherov was named the NHL's No. 1 star of the week on Monday.
-- The Rangers were held to two or fewer goals for the ninth time in the past 10 games.