NEW YORK -- In his first start against the club he led to two Stanley Cup titles, Jonathan Quick made 25 saves and the New York Rangers downed the Los Angeles Kings 4-1 on Sunday night at Madison Square Garden.
Quick, 37, who finished last season with the Vegas Golden Knights after he was traded to the Columbus Blue Jackets by the Kings, improved to 8-0-1 with a 2.34 goals-against average, and is enjoying a renaissance season playing close to his home state of Connecticut.
He signed a free-agent contract with the Rangers last summer and has been stellar as Igor Shesterkin's backup for a first-place team. And on Sunday, he helped the club to bounce right back, following Saturday's 4-0 loss to the Washington Capitals.
"Obviously, it's special," Quick said. "This summer, when the schedule comes out, you know when you're playing them. The effort from the guys in front of me -- blocking shots -- was tremendous."
Quick made an acrobatic glove save on Carl Grundstrom at 13:38 of the third, eliciting cheers from the New York crowd, who has graciously accepted him, even after he defeated the Rangers in the 2014 Stanley Cup Finals.
Quick played 16 seasons for the Kings, with 370 wins and 2.46 goals-against average. In addition to the Stanley Cup crowns, the first being in 2012, he was a Vezina Trophy finalist in 2011-12 and 2015-16.
"It's a long day," Quick said. "Having never played them before, and the way it ended there, you're just kind of replaying a lot of the memories throughout the day."
Quick became the sixth goaltender in NHL history to win his first game against his former club after playing at least 500 contests for his original team.
Mika Zibanejad and Jimmy Vesey scored second-period goals as New York handed the Kings their second straight road loss after winning an NHL-record 11 consecutive games away from home to start the season. Los Angeles lost 3-2 in overtime to the New York Islanders on Saturday.
"I think it was exactly what we needed to do," Rangers coach Peter Laviolette said of his team's response to Saturday's loss. "They are a good hockey team, real good defensively. We stuck with it and generated chances in the second and third. A really good start-to-finish game."
The Rangers have won four straight against the Kings. New York improved to 10-2-1 against teams from the Western Conference and 6-0-0 against Pacific Division teams.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.