NEW YORK (AP) – Jaromir Jagr scored twice to end a goal-scoring slump and Brendan Shanahan set up a pair of third-period power-play goals to help the New York Rangers beat the Carolina Hurricanes 4-2 on Wednesday night.

Chris Drury and Dan Girardi also scored for the Rangers, who snapped a three-game losing streak, winning for only the third time in the last 11 games.

Scott Walker and Eric Stall scored for Carolina, which had won 3-of-4.

The Rangers started strong, grabbing an early 10-3 shot advantage. Cam Ward was equal to the challenge, making all the stops, even on a power-play sequence when he lost his stick. The Rangers finished the scoreless opening period with a 13-5 shot advantage.

In the second, Walker scored a short-handed goal and Stall got a power-play tally as the Hurricanes took a 2-1 lead.

Jagr got the game’s first score at 2:28, ending a 10-game drought without a goal.

The lead didn’t last long as Walker connected at 4:38.

The game took a nasty turn midway through the period when New York’s Colton Orr leveled former Ranger Matt Cullen with a forearm/elbow to the face. Cullen appeared to be momentarily unconscious, falling face-first to the ice while Carolina’s Mike Commodore challenged and fought Orr.

Cullen was eventually helped off the ice, clutching a towel to a facial cut.

Commodore got a major penalty for fighting; Orr got majors for fighting and interference and a game misconduct. The Ranger penalty killers performed admirably, killing off the five-minute penalty to keep the score tied at 1.

They weren’t as fortunate on the next penalty when Michal Rozsival was whistled for high-sticking at 14:23. Stall cashed in the man-advantage at 16:19, slipping Dennis Seidenberg’s rebound past Henrik Lundqvist.

In the third, a pair of a hard shots by Shanahan produced rebounds that led to power-play goals by Drury and Girardi as the Rangers took a 3-2 lead and control of the game.

After Drury scored at 1:38, Girardi, a defenseman, attacked the Carolina net and was in position to slam home the rebound at 7:06.

Jagr followed with his second goal at 9:55. Scott Gomez assisted on both of Jagr’s goals, stretching his point-scoring streak to 10.

Lundqvist made several dazzling stops in the final minutes as the Hurricanes attacked 6-on-3. Carolina pulled Ward for an extra attacker and the Rangers picked up a pair of penalties. Lundqvist finished with 20 saves.

Notes: The Rangers now begin a five-game stretch against Canadian opponents starting with Toronto on Saturday. … The Hurricanes Glen Wesley moved into sole possession of seventh-place among defensemen in games played. Wesley has appeared in 1,417, one more than Hall of Famer Al MacInnis. … Commodore returned to lineup after missing 13 of the previous 14 games with finger and foot injuries. Hurricanes D David Tanabe missed a third-straight game with a concussion.

AP-ES-12-26-07 2143EST


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