Brad Richards scored two power-play goals, and the playoff-bound New York Rangers improved their chances for home-ice advantage in the first round with a 4-1 victory over the Carolina Hurricanes on Tuesday night.

Brad Richards and Derek Stepan of the New York Rangers celebrate a goal at Madison Square Garden in New York City. (Al Bello, Getty Images)

Richards scored in the first period to tie it and then stretched New York's lead to two goals in the second period with his 20th of the season -- the 10th time he has reached the mark in the NHL. Martin St. Louis had his best game with the Rangers with three assists, and Benoit Pouliot and Derek Stepan also scored.

Henrik Lundqvist made 27 saves as the Rangers beat the Hurricanes for the 11th time in 12 games.

The Rangers, who clinched a postseason berth Monday when New Jersey lost, is trying to hold off Philadelphia and Columbus for second place in the Metropolitan Division with two games left.

Patrick Dwyer scored for Carolina.

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