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Ben Bishop earns 23rd win of the season in return for Lightning

Ben Bishop returned after a brief stint on the IR to earn the Lightning a 2-1 win over the New York Rangers
Ben Bishop returned after a brief stint on the IR to earn the Lightning a 2-1 win over the New York RangersPhoto by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Ben Bishop may have had a three-game layoff after suffering a sprained wrist on Jan. 5, but he hardly missed a beat in his return Tuesday night at Madison Square Garden.

Bishop made 33 saves in the 2-1 victory to end the New York Rangers' three-game winning streak, keeping them right in the heart of the Eastern Conference's log-jammed standings.

"We played solidly, and I felt no rush," Bishop said according to USA Today. " This was big for us coming into his building and playing well. It's a fun place to play. You have to be excited playing at Madison Square Garden."

The win improved Bishop's record to an impressive 23-5-3 record with a 1.83 goals-against-average and four shutouts.The two-point outcome also allowed the Lightning to distance themselves from the Montreal Canadiens who were in action last night but were not as fortunate as Tampa Bay. The Lightning now sit in second in their division and are three points ahead on Montreal.

Brad Richards got his team on the scoreboard first, keeping his six-game point streak alive. The Rangers lead would carry over into the second period, but Victor Hedman woke up his club at 1:10 of the second with a power play goal. Martin St. Louis and Teddy Purcell would be credited with the assists on the tying goal which seemed to spark the Lightning's offense.

Nine seconds after Hedman's tally, Nikita Kucherov would slip one through the legs of Henrik Lundqvist on a breakaway to take the lead with what would be the eventual game-winner.

Lundqvist made 23 saves on 25 shots for the Rangers who had points in each of the last five games at Madison Square Garden heading into Tuesday's tilt.