Maxim Afinogenov scored a power-play goal 4:39 into overtime to give the Buffalo Sabres a come-from-behind 2-1 victory over the New York Rangers at Buffalo, N.Y., on Friday night, moving them to within one win of the Eastern Conference finals.
Chris Drury forced overtime by scoring with less than eight seconds left as the Sabres finally beat goalie Henrik Lundqvist with their 37th shot on goal.
Buffalo rebounded from two defeats at New York -- the Sabres' first losing streak since March -- and a 1-0 deficit Friday to take a 3-2 lead in the best-of-seven series.
Afinogenov's goal came 11 seconds after New York's Blair Betts was penalized for hooking. Getting the puck at the right point, Afinogenov shifted into the middle and, with Thomas Vanek providing a screen in front, blasted a shot that beat Lundqvist through the legs.
The Ducks' series-clinching victory over Vancouver in Game 5 Thursday night, shown exclusively on Versus, delivered an 0.8 rating for the Los Angeles market, which the network said was its highest-ever rating for hockey in L.A.
Game 3 on Sunday night, also televised exclusively by Versus, got a 0.6 rating. The 0.7 average for the two exclusive Versus telecasts is 75% higher than the 0.4 average for two exclusive network telecasts during the conference semifinals last year.
Game 5 of San Jose-Detroit series will be televised this morning at 11 by Channel 4, which might have to cut away if the game goes past the 2 p.m. start of Kentucky Derby coverage. If that is the case, the hockey game probably will be moved to Versus.
-- Larry Stewart