Carter goal secures win over New York Rangers as Devils edge nearer Los Angeles showdown.
New Jersey Devils close in Stanley Cup finals
NEW YORK// Ryan Carter's third goal of the playoffs proved decisive as the New Jersey Devils held on to beat the New York Rangers 5-3 in game five of their Eastern Conference championship series.
Now the Devils are just one win away from securing their berth in the Stanley Cup final against Los Angeles - with game six of the series to come this Friday.
Carter scored a tiebreaking goal with 4:24 left in the third period for the Devils, who are trying to return to the Stanley Cup finals for the first time since winning the title in 2003.
Zach Parise added an empty-netter in the final minute for New Jersey.
The Devils claimed a 3-0 lead in the opening period but the Rangers chipped away at the margin, tying the game early in the third when Marian Gaborik poked the puck past Martin Brodeur from in close.
The Rangers restored forward Brandon Prust to their line-up following his one game suspension for an elbow to the head of New Jersey defenceman Anton Volchenkov in game three - and were rewarded when he started the revival with a goal in the first period to cut the Devils lead to 3-1.
The Devils are now 6-4 on the road in the postseason.
New Jersey and Rangers split the first four games of this best-of-seven series, with New York taking games one and three by identical 3-0 scores and the sixth-seeded Devils winning one at home and one on the road.
The Atlantic Division rivals met six times during the regular season and each team won three of those contests.
The Rangers have dominated the playoff history against the Devils, winning four of the five all-time playoff series between the clubs.
New Jersey's only win came in a sweep in the 2006 conference quarter-finals.