Marek Malik ended the NHL's longest shootout in the 15th round last night, fooling goalie Olie Kolzig with a trick shot that gave the New York Rangers a 3-2 victory over the Washington Capitals at Madison Square Garden.
With only two available skaters left on the Rangers' bench, the defenseman took a shot with his stick between his skates and beat Kolzig, giving the Rangers their longest winning streak in nearly four years.
New York has won five straight, its best stretch since a five-game run from March 30-April 8, 2002.
The Rangers, who also got shootout goals from Michael Nylander, Ville Nieminen, and Jason Strudwick, improved to 4-1 in the new tiebreaker. Washington fell to 3-2 in shootouts despite goals from Andrew Cassels, Brian Willsie, and Bryan Muir.
Strudwick kept the shootout going, matching Muir's 14th-round score.
Chris Clark and Willsie scored second-period goals to rally Washington from a 2-0 deficit after Jason Ward and Jed Ortmeyer scored for the Rangers. It was the sixth straight meeting between the clubs decided by one goal.
Kolzig and Rangers counterpart Henrik Lundqvist were sharp in the third period and even better in the shootout. Kolzig turned away Jaromir Jagr, who spent the first two minutes of overtime in the penalty box after his former teammates caught him using an illegal stick.
Lundqvist, subbing for injured starter Kevin Weekes, was the first goalie to stop Alexander Ovechkin in a shootout.
Ovechkin, who leads rookie scorers with 15 goals, made the defensive stop of the game in regulation. Ortmeyer raced in on a breakaway with just over 10 minutes left in regulation, but Ovechkin dived in front to knock the puck off his stick.
Kings 3, Blackhawks 2 -- Luc Robitaille scored the go-ahead goal late in the second period, Alexander Frolov had a goal and an assist, and Los Angeles beat Chicago for its fifth straight home victory. Pavol Demitra also scored and Mathieu Garon made 25 saves, helping the Kings beat Chicago for the fourth straight time.
Kings left wing Ryan Flinn, just called up from Manchester of the American Hockey League, was carried off on a stretcher and taken to Los Angeles County Hospital for observation after his head struck the ice during a fight with defenseman Jim Vandermeer at 9:08 of the first period.
Maple Leafs 4, Canadiens 3 -- Mats Sundin scored a power-play goal at 1:29 of overtime, lifting Toronto over visiting Montreal.
Montreal's Craig Rivet was called for tripping Nik Antropov at the end of regulation, giving Toronto the man advantage in overtime. After his pass from the side of the net deflected off a Montreal player and back to him, Sundin put a quick shot past goalie Jose Theodore.
Red Wings 7, Sharks 6 -- At San Jose, Brendan Shanahan scored the tying and winning goals in a 70-second span late in the third period and Mathieu Schneider scored three goals to help Detroit hand San Jose its ninth straight loss. Robert Lang added five assists for the Red Wings, who had lost five of six.
The Sharks' skid is their longest since losing 13 in a row late in the 1992-93 season, when they still played at the Cow Palace.
Islanders 4, Flyers 2 -- Jason Blake scored three times and Brad Lukowich had the go-ahead goal 4:43 into the third period for visiting New York. Garth Snow stopped 34 shots as the Islanders snapped a two-game skid.
Thrashers 7, Panthers 4 -- Marc Savard scored two goals, including one of Atlanta's three in the third period, and added two assists as the host Thrashers ended a three-game losing streak.
Blue Jackets 4, Blues 3 -- Aaron Johnson's first goal of the season snapped a third-period tie and visiting Columbus ended a seven-game losing streak.
Coyotes 2, Canucks 1 -- Ladislav Nagy had a goal and an assist and Curtis Joseph made 34 saves for host Arizona. Former Bruin Sean O'Donnell added his first goal for the Coyotes.
Stars 3, Predators 1 -- Stu Barnes had a goal and an assist and Marty Turco made 23 saves to help Dallas beat host Nashville.