East-leading Rangers win 4th straight

IRA PODELL AP Sports Writer Published:

NEW YORK (AP) -- Marian Gaborik and Brad Richards scored early, and defenseman Michael Del Zotto had two goals in the third period as the New York Rangers won their fourth in a row and moved closer to securing the top seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs with a 4-1 victory over the Montreal Canadiens on Friday night.

Henrik Lundqvist was steady throughout in winning for the third straight game and for the sixth time in seven. He won at Minnesota and at Winnipeg to get to 250 NHL victories, and helped the Rangers widen their lead. His best stop of the night came two minutes into the third period when he denied David Desharnais on a breakaway to keep the score at 2-0.

Rene Bourque spoiled Lundqvist's chances of a shutout when he scored with 2:29 left to make it 4-1. Lundqvist made 19 saves.

The Rangers moved one point ahead of the St. Louis Blues in the race for the Presidents' Trophy.