(Reuters) - Two of the top teams in the Eastern Conference traded blows until the New York Rangers landed a third-period knockout over Philadelphia in a 5-2 win on Sunday that extended their domination over the Flyers.
Scoring three straight goals in the third to put a 2-2 tie behind them, the Rangers (33-12-5) beat the Flyers (30-16-6) for the fourth time this season to keep their lead in the East at three points.
"We have been neck and neck with those guys all year long," New York's Brandon Dubinsky told reporters. "Every game we've played against them has been physical, a playoff type atmosphere and we knew it was going to be like that today."
Michael Del Zotto, Brandon Dubinsky and Ruslan Fedotenko were the goal scorers who put the game away in the third after Philadelphia had hung close through the first two periods.
New York's Artem Anisimov made a tip-in in the first minute to put the home Rangers ahead. Brayden Schenn scored for the Flyers midway through the second before Marian Gaborik put New York back in front with his 26th goal of the season.
Wayne Simmonds tied the score for Philadelphia a minute into the third before things went south for the Flyers.
Ilya Bryzgalov made 33 saves and had successfully kept the Rangers at bay until the third.
Henrik Lundqvist, who had recorded shutouts in consecutive games entering the contest, had 21 saves in another New York victory, their sixth straight overall against the Flyers.
"It's a great feeling, the fans were ready to go and everybody was excited to play Philly again," Lundqvist said. "Every time it's a big battle and so far we've been successful against them and we've just been working really hard."
(Writing by Jahmal Corner in Los Angeles; Editing by Frank Pingue)