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Lafreniere scores twice Rangers extend winning streak 9 with 5-1 win over Devils

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — Alexis Lafreniere scored twice, Artemi Panarin had three assists and the New York Rangers beat the New Jersey Devils 5-1 Thursday night for won their ninth straight win to tie their longest streak in eight seasons.

Igor Shesterkin made 39 saves and picked up his first assist of the season as the Rangers moved within a win of tying their longest winning streak in franchise history. They had 10-game runs in 1972-73 and 1939-40.

Mika Zibanejad scored a power-play goal, linemate Chris Kreider got his 29th of the season and Vincent Trocheck talled late for New York, which has not lost since Jan. 26 against the Stanley Cup champion Vegas Golden Knights. The Metropolitan Division leader killed all five New Jersey power plays, including an early five-minute major to rookie Matt Rempe and a four-minute high sticking call against Kaapo Kakko.

Jack Hughes broke up Shesterkin's bid for a second shutout this season with 2:07 to play. Nico Daws made 13 saves for New Jersey, which lost its second straight and for the third time in four games.

This one was embarrassing at home as Rangers fans made it feel like the game was across the river at Madison Square Garden.

After the Rangers killed off the major to Rempe while allowing five shots, they took the lead on Zibanejad's 19th of the season on a shot in close. It came just 5 seconds after Curtis Lazar was called for slashing Shesterkin.

Lafreniere doubled the lead with 2:04 left in the period with a shot in close after New Jersey defenseman Luke Hughes turned the puck over in front of his net with the teams playing 4 on 4.

Kreider scored on a counterattack in the second period that was set up by Shesterkin making a pass from his crease to Panarin at the Devils' blue line. Lafreniere got his second on a breakaway set up by Trocheck, who tallied late in the third on Panarin's final assist.

UP NEXT

Rangers: At Philadelphia on Saturday.

Devils: Host Montreal on Saturday.

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AP NHL: https://apnews.com/hub/nhl

Tom Canavan, The Associated Press