Talbot steps in, backstops Rangers to victory

– Cam Talbot made 18 saves in place of the injured Henrik Lundqvist, Rick Nash had a goal and an assist, and Derek Stepan broke a second-period tie to lift the New York Rangers to their third consecutive victory, 3-2 over the Boston Bruins on Wednesday night.

Talbot, whose previous start was a 3-0 loss at Boston on Jan. 15, got the nod after Lundqvist was forced to sit out because of a neck injury caused when he was struck in the throat by a shot against Carolina on Saturday. Lundqvist is day to day.

"I got a text last night saying maybe be ready, and then this morning when I got to the rink they gave me the go," said Talbot (5-4-1). "I really didn't have to do a whole lot. The guys did a great job in front of me.

HIGHLIGHTS

•FLAMES HEATING UP: Kris Russell, Jiri Hudler and Mason Raymond scored second-period goals as the Flames beat the Sharks 3-1 in Calgary, Alberta, for their third consecutive victory. Calgary moved into a second-place tie in the Pacific Division with San Jose.

•FLEURY, PENGUINS BLANK OILERS: Marc-Andre Fleury made 22 saves for his seventh shutout of the season and Evgeni Malkin and David Perron scored second-­period goals as the Penguins defeated the Oilers 2-0 in Pittsburgh. Fleury was especially sharp in the third period, when Edmonton outshot the Penguins 10-2.

•RINNE READY TO RETURN: Predators goalie Pekka Rinne has been cleared to return from a knee injury that kept him out the past three weeks, and he will start Thursday against the Ducks..

•HOWE'S BROTHER DIES: Vic Howe, Gordie Howe's younger brother and a former NHL player with the Rangers, has died. He was 85. Helen Cummine, the Howes' sister, said Vic Howe died Saturday in Moncton, New Brunswick, days before a family gathering in Saskatoon. She said he had dementia and suffered a heart attack.

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