MONTREAL — Without Carey Price, the run for a first Stanley Cup in 21 years got steeper and longer for the Canadiens.
The bad news kept coming Monday for Montreal.
Henrik Lundqvist had 40 saves to lead the Rangers to a 3-1 win and a 2-0 lead in the Eastern Conference final after two victories on the road.
Ryan McDonagh had a goal and an assist for New York and has six points in the series. Rick Nash and former Lightning captain Marty St. Louis also scored.
Max Pacioretty scored for the Canadiens, who found out earlier in the day that Price, an All-Star who led Canada to the gold medal at the Sochi Olympics, is out for the series with an injury sustained in Game 1.
Third-stringer Dustin Tokarski, a former Lightning prospect, allowed three goals on 30 shots in his NHL playoff debut.
In the afternoon, Canadiens coach Michel Therrien looked grim and even angry in announcing that Price would be absent.
He gave no details of the injury, a suspected right knee problem, but suggested Price would be back if Montreal can reach the Stanley Cup final.
"Really disappointed. He's our best player," Therrien said. "We need to rally around Carey. We need to give him a chance to play again this season."
Backup Peter Budaj has been with the club all season, but has a terrible career playoff record that includes an 0-2-0 record and an .843 save percentage.
So Montreal turned to Tokarski, who was drafted by Tampa Bay in 2008 and acquired Feb. 14, 2013 for Cedrick Desjardins.
Saturday, Price clutched his right knee when Rangers forward Chris Kreider crashed into him skates-first at 3:15 of the second period. Price finished the period, but didn't look comfortable in allowing two goals in the final 1:01. He was replaced in the third by Budaj, who allowed three goals on eight shots.
Therrien was angrier the next day when it became clear the injury was worse than first suspected, saying Kreider could have tried to avoid the collision.
First—1, Montreal, Pacioretty 4, 6:14. 2, N.Y. Rangers, McDonagh 3, 6:31. 3, N.Y. Rangers, Nash 2 (Kreider, Stepan), 18:58. Penalties—D.Moore, NYR (unsportsmanlike conduct), 1:29; Beaulieu, Mon (roughing), 1:29; Hagelin, NYR (tripping), 13:48; Vanek, Mon (slashing), 14:22.
Second—4, N.Y. Rangers, St. Louis 5 (Stepan, McDonagh), 8:03 (pp). Penalties—Girardi, NYR (cross-checking), 1:49; Eller, Mon (tripping), 1:49; Subban, Mon (roughing), 2:41; Galchenyuk, Mon (tripping), 7:29; Pouliot, NYR (tripping), 8:44; Kreider, NYR (holding), 19:20.
Third—None. Penalties—Pouliot, NYR (boarding), 15:38. Shots—N.Y. Rangers 9-11-10—30. Montreal 14-8-19—41. Power plays—N.Y. Rangers 1 of 3; Montreal 0 of 4. Goalies—N.Y. Rangers, Lundqvist 10-6-0 (41 shots-40 saves). Montreal, Tokarski 0-1-0 (30-27). A—21,273 (21,273). T—2:30.
Around the league: The Blues re-signed goalie Brian Elliott to a three-year contract and will not pursue a new deal with Ryan Miller. General manager Doug Armstrong said the team took a calculated risk acquiring Miller from Buffalo, but St. Louis was eliminated in the first round of the playoffs. … Ducks general manager Bob Murray agreed to a four-year contract extension through 2020. Murray had two years remaining on his existing contract.