Andrew Ference giveth, and Andrew Ference taketh away.
The Bruins' defenseman gave the Bruins life, scoring a beauty of a goal just 3:28 into the second period, but his five-minute major in overtime cost the Bruins a point as the New York Rangers won a hard-fought battle at TD Garden, 3-2.
Marian Gaborik netted the game-winner for the Blueshirts with just 3.6 seconds remaining in the extra frame, after Boston nearly killed the final 3:10 of the period after Ference's charging major put Boston on the 4-on-3 penalty kill.
Ryan Callahan opened the scoring for New York with a slapshot that beat Tuukka Rask high on the short side just 91 seconds into the second period.
Not two minutes later, and just 44 seconds after Shawn Thornton scored a takedown in a fight with Mike Rupp, David Krejci threaded a nifty pass to a streaking Ference who went forehand-backhand to beat Lundqvist to tie the game up.
The Bruins got goals from two unlikely sources, with Ference and defensive partner Adam McQuaid both netting goals in the second period after the Rangers took one-goal leads.
McQuaid and his teammates all battled a strong Rangers backcheck, one that sent the backpedaling Bruins power play to an 0-for-4 night.
"It felt like we were playing against five goalies at times," McQuaid said after the game, referring to New York's penchant for clogging shooting lanes and breaking up passes.
After Marian Gaborik managed to wrist a bouncing puck in the high slot past Rask at 14:30 of the second, it looked as if the Rangers would control things heading into the third period. That was until a McQuaid slapshot from the half-wall found its way into the top corner of the net with just 49 seconds to play in the middle frame, bringing the Bruins back to even heading into the third period.
The third period was a dead heat, with the Bruins best chances coming shorthanded; after Boston went without a minor penalty for the first 40 minutes, two late tripping calls put Boston a man short, but Daniel Paille, Rich Peverley and Patrice Bergeron each had chances to score during the two penalties that Boston killed at the end of regulation.
Attendance was 17,565...The Bruins headed to Philadelphia after the game, where they'll take on the Flyers at 3 PM tomorrow...Boston, which lost just three games in 60 days between November 1st and December 30th, has now lost three in the last eight, a span in which they've gone 2-3.