(Photo credit: Nick Wosika-USA TODAY Sports)
Jimmy Vesey scored twice, collecting the go-ahead goal late in the third period as the visiting New York Rangers beat the New Jersey Devils 5-3 on Saturday night.
The Devils peppered Rangers goaltender Igor Shesterkin with four shots in a 54-second span before Vesey picked up a rebound of a shot by Tyler Pitlick and sent a no-look backhand past goalie Vitek Vanecek for a 4-3 lead with 2:49 left.
The two-goal game was the ninth of Vesey's career and his first since he scored twice against the Toronto Maple Leafs on Dec. 15, 2022.
Artemi Panarin scored twice and Blake Wheeler added an empty-netter with 1:33 left for the Rangers, who have won four straight. Shesterkin, who missed the previous four games with an undisclosed injury, made 30 saves.
Jack Hughes, who returned Saturday after being sidelined five games with an upper-body injury, scored the first goal for the Devils, who beat the Rangers in seven games last spring in an Eastern Conference first-round playoff series.
Ondrej Palat and Erik Haula also scored as New Jersey fell for the fifth time in seven games.
Vanecek also recorded 30 saves.
Panarin opened the scoring with a power play goal 8:37 into the first before the Devils tied the score in unusual fashion 48 seconds later. Hughes' angled shot from the top right faceoff circle was slowed by Shesterkin before the puck trickled on its side between his legs.
The goal was initially waved off because a whistle was blown as the puck was in the crease but was overturned upon review.
Vesey put back the rebound of Braden Schneider's shot with 5:49 left in the first.
The Devils tied the score with a power-play goal with 48 seconds remaining in the opening period, when Palat's shot from the slot glanced off Shesterkin and bounced into the net.
After a scoreless second, Haula gave the Devils their first lead 77 seconds into the third. Hughes didn't fully connect on his shot into the crease, but Haula corralled the puck and backhanded a shot past Shesterkin.
The Rangers tied the score following a faceoff with 8:56 left. The puck remained free after Vincent Trocheck's duel with Haula before Panarin swooped in and fired a shot over Vanecek's glove.
--Field Level Media