Jagr scores 600th goal; Rangers beat LightningNov 20, 2006 - 3:23 AM
Jagr scored his 600th career goal and added two assists as the Rangers posted a 4-1 victory over the Tampa Bay Lightning.
Brendan Shanahan scored his NHL-leading 16th goal and Martin Straka and Michael Nylander each had a goal and two assists for the Rangers, who snap a two-game slide.
However, the night belonged to the five-time Art Ross Trophy winner, who finished second in the league in scoring last season.
Jagr, a nine-time All-Star who is in his third season with New York, became the 16th player in history to score 600 goals.
"I have had some really good goals that were not that pretty and I have pretty goals going one-on-one against somebody," Jagr said. "I have been fortunate to play with some good teams and have some real good teammates, like I did in Pittsburgh."
A member of two Stanley Cup championship teams, Jagr reached the plateau just 1:43 into the contest with his ninth tally of the season, climbing within one of Hall of Famer Jari Kurri for 15th place on the all-time list.
"It is probably going to hit me later," Jagr said. "I just hope I get a lot more before I retire. I am going to put the puck with my stick and give it to my mother. She collects those kinds of things."
Jagr, who was named the 24th captain in Rangers team history prior to the start of the season, joins Shanahan as the only teammates to score 600 goals in the same season.
"Being on the same team as them (Jagr and Shanahan) is what is most exciting," Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist said. "When I was growing up, these were the stars ... and they're still the stars. I didn't watch much NHL (in Sweden), but I saw a lot of highlights of them. It's fun to be around so much talent."
Once the 1998-99 Hart Memorial Trophy winner tallied, the referee picked up the puck and gave it to Nylander, who showed the puck to the cheering partisan New York crowd before skating over and delivering it to Jagr on the bench.
"Everybody feeds off moments like that," Shanahan said. "We talked about each line winning their first shift and making more of a statement. I have been in situations where you have been sitting a goal away from a milestone and it becomes your focus and your obsession and the team's obsession. Like I said, when got that goal, it lifted everybody."
Nylander tallied just under three minutes into the second period to give the Rangers a 2-0 lead. His power-play goal occurred on a second deflection when Straka's shot was knocked out of the air by Shanahan toward the front of the net and Nylander was there to tip it past goaltender Johan Holmqvist.
Tampa Bay had a chance to halve the deficit with 1:07 left in the second session. Vincent Lecavalier made a pass to Eric Perrin from behind the net. Perrin then guided the puck with his left skate past Lundqvist for what the Lightning thought was a goal.
Upon video review, the replay judge disallowed the tally due to the distinct kicking motion of Perrin. Lightning coach John Tortorella argued the call and received an abuse of officials penalty. Seconds later, he was given a game-misconduct.
"(The officials) are talking to somebody in Toronto (NHL Headquarters) or wherever," Lightning assistant Craig Ramsay said. "Those people are paid to make those decisions and they've been going against us. When things like that go against you, you start to wonder."
Shanahan tallied with a man advantage roughly four minutes into the third session and Straka scored 2 1/2 minutes later for New York, which has won two straight at home.
"We tried to get a big kill at the start of the third and we didn't," Lightning center Brad Richards said. "If it stays 2-0, you never know."
"It wasn't a very exciting game in the first period," Jagr said. "They were flat and we didn't play much better. We took the lead and just took control. They play a pretty wide open game and are going for home runs and don't care about anything else. It is a different game with them."
Holmqvist stopped 30 shots and Lundqvist nearly had a shutout before allowing a goal by Perrin with 2:40 left to play.
"We had our opportunities in the third period," Ramsey said. "We hit about two or three posts and, if we got one there, you have something going and the momentum changes and the team reacts to that."
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