WASHINGTON — Henrik Lundqvist earned his 46th career shutout, Brad Richards assisted on two goals less than two minutes apart in the second period, and the Rangers beat the Capitals 2-0 on Wednesday night to end a three-game losing streak.
Including the teams' meeting in the first round of last season's playoffs, Lundqvist has three straight shutouts against the Capitals. He blanked them in Games 6 and 7 of their Eastern Conference matchup to help give New York the series win.
Richards helped set up goals by Ryan Callahan and John Moore, and Lundqvist made 22 saves. "It just felt really good the way we played from the get-go," Lundqvist said.
Said captain Ryan Callahan, "It was a lot of simple plays, not so pretty, but we wore (the Capitals) down, and you could see they got frustrated."
The Rangers won for only the second time in six games under first-year coach Alain Vigneault. Their season-opening nine-game road swing, necessitated by the latest rounds of renovations at Madison Square Garden, has three more stops.
Hearing for scary hit: Blues forward Maxim Lapierre was offered an in-person hearing for his hit that knocked out the Sharks' Dan Boyle and resulted in the defenseman being taken off the ice on a stretcher Tuesday. In-person hearings are offered for suspensions that could exceed five games. Lapierre is suspended pending the hearing.
Boyle, who was hospitalized overnight, said Wednesday he was okay, and the former Lightning player was expected to leave the hospital and return to San Jose.
Lapierre, who was thrown out of the game, told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch he was just trying to finish his check and wanted to apologize to Boyle. He said he had tried to contact Boyle but Boyle hadn't responded.
Around the league: Sabres forward Patrick Kaleta will appeal his 10-game suspension for a hit to the head of Blue Jackets defenseman Jack Johnson. … The Panthers said goalie Tim Thomas will start tonight against the Bruins, whom he backstopped to the Stanley Cup in 2011 and then left after the 2012 season for a hiatus. Thomas hasn't played since suffering a groin injury Oct. 8.
First Period—None. Penalties—Staal, NYR (roughing), 8:03; Brouwer, Was (roughing), 8:03; Stralman, NYR (hook), 10:15; Pyatt, NYR (hook), 11:20; Falk, NYR, major (fight), 17:42; Wilson, Was, major (fight), 17:42.
Second Period—1, NYR, J.Moore 1 (Richards, McDonagh), 12:05. 2, NYR, Callahan 3 (Richards, Brassard), 13:51. Penalties—Fehr, Was (high-stick), 1:40; Stralman, NYR (hold), 10:42; Ovechkin, Was (slash), 11:19.
Third Period—None. Penalties—Wilson, Was (interference), 8:17; Richards, NYR (hold), 9:12. Shots on Goal—NYR 11-21-4—36. Wash 8-6-8—22. PP opportunities—NYR 0 of 3; Wash 0 of 4. Goalies—NYR, Lundqvist 2-3-0 (22 shots-22 saves). Wash, Holtby 1-4-0 (36-34).