UNIONDALE, N.Y. -- John Tortorella isn't shy about his distaste for the Nassau Coliseum.
Richards' go-ahead goal with 4:55 remaining snapped a tie and sent the Rangers to their seventh consecutive victory, 4-2 against the Islanders on Tuesday night.
Richards broke a 2-2 tie, and Ryan Callahan added an empty-net goal in the final second for the Rangers, who are on their longest winning streak since October 2009, when they also won seven in a row.
"Whenever you play in this building, it's up and down, and you never know what's going to happen," Tortorella said. "Richie has had some big plays for us early on here. I thought that it was probably one of his better games."
The Islanders (4-8-3) returned home from a three-game road trip and lost for the fifth time in six outings.
"It's frustrating," coach Jack Capuano said. "We played one of our better games."
Avery's second goal of the season, and second in two games, gave the Rangers a 1-0 lead 14:43 in. With Brian Boyle and Ruslan Fedotenko causing havoc around the crease, Avery snapped a wrist shot from the high slot that beat Nabokov to the stick side.
"It feels good just to feel good," Avery said.
The Islanders tied it just 2:49 later when Nielsen scored with an off-the-rush drive. The game then turned into the typical grind usually generated in this fierce rivalry. The Islanders finished with 29 hits, and the Rangers had 24.
Eminger put the Rangers ahead for the second time at 6:07 of the second period with his first goal since New York's 6-0 win at Washington on Feb. 25. Eminger has 18 goals in 427 NHL games.
Callahan set him up for the goal with a pass from below the hash marks.
"I saw him creeping in a little bit," Callahan said. "I was trying to buy him a little bit of time to get him back there. I saw him and made the pass."
But the goal crystallized a season-long issue with the Islanders. Offensive production outside of the Moulson-Tavares-Michael Grabner line hasn't been there.
"We have to get secondary scoring to win," Capuano said.
Tavares sounded every bit as frustrated as his coach.
"The puck's just not going in," he said.
Scoring hasn't been much of a concern for the Rangers during their streak as they have outscored opponents 27-11. The key to their success has been Richards, who has five points (three goals, two assists) in the seven games.
"We signed him for nine years. That's exactly why we signed him," Lundqvist said of Richards. "A guy like that, he has a tendency to step up at the right time. His focus is good when it comes down to the final minutes, when you need that extra play. It's great to see."
|In the battle of N.Y. rivals, Brad Richards makes sure the Rangers keep their winning streak intact with this go-ahead goal. (Getty Images)|
|NY Rangers (10-3-3) «||1||1||2||4|
|NY Islanders (4-8-3)||1||0||1||2|
Save Pct.: .939
Save Pct.: .897
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|14:43||- Sean Avery (2), Wrist Shot. Assist: Boyle, Sauer|
|17:06||- Frans Nielsen (4), Wrist Shot. Assist: Parenteau, Hamonic|
|06:07||- Steve Eminger (1), Wrist Shot. Assist: Callahan, Woywitka|
|06:58||Power Play - Matt Moulson (5), Tip-In. Assist: Tavares, Nielsen|
|15:05||- Brad Richards (6), Slap Shot. Assist: Dubinsky|
|19:59||- Ryan Callahan (8), Empty Net. Assist: McDonagh|
|19:04||Mottau, 2 min, Unsportsmanlike Conduct|
|19:04||Avery, 2 min, Unsportsmanlike Conduct|
|01:09||Avery, 5 min, Fighting|
|01:09||Mottau, 5 min, Fighting|
|02:54||Prust, 5 min, Fighting|
|02:54||Martin, 5 min, Fighting|
|02:54||Eminger, 2 min, Cross-Checking|
|06:42||Christensen, 2 min, Goaltender Interference|
|10:47||Callahan, 2 min, Slashing|
|16:32||Jurcina, 2 min, Hooking|
|17:01||Reasoner, 2 min, Tripping|
|19:14||MacDonald, 2 min, Roughing|
|02:16||Boyle, 2 min, Holding|
|06:18||Anisimov, 2 min, High-Sticking|
|10:12||Grabner, 2 min, Interference|
|Shots On Goal|