Final OT

Series (Game 1 of 6)

Philadelphia leads 5-1

Game 1: Saturday, November 8th
Game 2: Thursday, January 22nd
Game 3: Thursday, February 12th
Game 4: Saturday, February 14th
Game 5: Saturday, March 20th
Game 6: Saturday, March 27th

Flyers 2

(7-2-1, 18 pts)

Rangers 1

(5-4-2, 14 pts)

1:00 PM ET, November 8, 2003

Madison Square Garden, New York, New York

1 2 3 OT T
PHI 0 0 1 12
NYR 1 0 0 01

M. Ragnarsson (Flyers - D): Goals: 1, Assists: 0

T. Amonte (Flyers - RW): Goals: 1, Assists: 1

M. Dunham (Rangers - G): Saves: 30, Save Pct.: .938

Amonte scores to tie it, feeds Ragnarsson to win

NEW YORK (AP) -- Tony Amonte's shots and passes were on target during a short, yet successful overtime.

The first drive off his stick caught goalie Mike Dunham in the mask, the next one set up Marcus Ragnarsson 1:01 into the extra session in the Philadelphia Flyers' 2-1 victory Saturday over the New York Rangers.

Amonte scored the tying goal in the third period and then made things easy for Ragnarsson. Earlier on the shift, Amonte fired a shot during a two-on-one and caught Dunham high.

Undeterred, Amonte made a pass out in front to Ragnarsson, who beat Dunham with a quick shot from the right side.

"It's a great win for us," Ragnarsson said. "We came out a little flat in the first period, but in the second and third we kind of showed them what we are all about."

It was the first of six meetings between the Atlantic Division rivals. The Rangers, the last NHL team to play a divisional opponent, trail the division-leading Flyers by four points.

"Obviously, we'd like to have taken both points or at least not given up both points," Rangers forward Petr Nedved said. "With effort like this, we're going to be winning a lot of games."

Jeremy Roenick assisted on both Philadelphia goals, and Amonte stretched his point streak to eight games, recording six goals and six assists.

Things started slowly for the Flyers, who were outshot 13-9 in the first period and trailed 1-0 on Vladimir Malakhov's goal. They held a 23-9 advantage in shots the rest of the way in winning in overtime for the first time this season (1-1-3).

"The big bonus, regardless of the points, is the way we played in the second and third periods," Flyers coach Ken Hitchcock said. "It would have been very disappointing if we didn't respond."

Amonte tied it with a power-play goal 49 seconds into the third, 19 seconds into the advantage. It was the 16th power-play goal this season for Philadelphia, which entered with the NHL's second-best unit.

"It took a while for the momentum to turn, but it turned eventually," Amonte said.

Jeff Hackett made 31 saves to improve to 3-2-2.

Malakhov gave the Rangers a 1-0 lead with 6:11 left in the first period. Dunham, returning from a two-game break to rest a sore groin, stopped 20 shots.

The hard hitting started early.

Only 6:14 elapsed when New York's Dale Purinton fought Donald Brashear. That was the only bout, but hardly the only encounter.

Anson Carter leveled an unsuspecting Ragnarsson behind the Philadelphia net in the second period, when the Flyers held a 9-4 shots advantage.

Also in the period, Eric Lindros -- playing for the first time in eight games -- got locked up with Philadelphia's Todd Fedoruk and drew him into taking a roughing penalty. Lindros returned against his former team after a seven-game absence caused by a sprained chest muscle.

Rangers captain Mark Messier and former New York defenseman Kim Johnsson -- who was dealt to Philadelphia for Lindros -- also battled along the boards.

Philadelphia forward Simon Gagne took a slash in his left hamstring, which tightened up in the first period. He made a few attempts to play through it, but decided to shut it down in the second due to stiffness.

Rangers defenseman Darius Kasparaitis got his stick caught in the skate of Philadelphia defenseman Joni Pitkanen and tugged fiercely until prying it loose.

Dunham was stellar in the second period, weathering several Flyers onslaughts when the Rangers couldn't clear the puck.

Johnsson was turned aside with a left-pad save, and Dunham also sticked away Ragnarsson's one-timer in front midway through the second. He then made a fantastic stop to deny Amonte, after a turnover in front, with just over five minutes left in the period.

Hackett, on a goalie rotation with Robert Esche, played well to win for the first time in four starts (1-2-1). He made a save in the final minute of regulation, and Lindros fired a shot over the top of the net seconds later.

Game notes

Flyers D Eric Desjardins sat out his second straight game due to a sore back. He expects to play Tuesday against the New York Islanders. C Claude Lapointe also missed his second consecutive contest. ... New York scratched LW Jan Hlavac and rookie C Dominic Moore, and played D Purinton at forward as part of a shake-up in fitting Lindros back into the lineup. Purinton played just one other game this season, and was scratched the previous 10.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press