Enrico Ciccone came up with a big goal and Olaf Kolzig came up with a big save.
The defending Eastern Conference champions, in danger of falling out of the playoff race, kept their faint hopes alive with the precious point. They moved within eight points of the Boston Bruins for the eighth and final playoff berth in the East.
The tie left the Rangers one point behind the Bruins.
With New York nursing a 1-0 lead, Michal Pivonka won the faceoff in the Rangers end, Tom Chorske nudged the puck back to the left point and Ciccone beat Mike Richter with a low shot to the far side of the net for his third goal of the season at 11:44.
"I saw it at the last minute," Richter said. "I didn't think it was going to hit the net."
Washington held a territorial edge through the game, but Richter was sharp in making 33 saves.
"We should have won the game," said Capitals coach Ron Wilson. "We carried the play throughout. Mike Richter earned them a point."
| Mike Richter kept the Rangers in it. (AP)|
Rumun Ndur scored his first NHL goal to give the Rangers a 1-0 lead. Ndur took a pass from Fraser just behind the left circle and blasted a slap shot through a group of players past Kolzig at 14:33 of the first period.
The Rangers made the goal stand up into the third period despite managing only four shots in the first period and one through the first 11 minutes of the second. New York killed off a two-man Washington advantage for 40 seconds, and Richter was brilliant, making key saves on Jaroslav Svejkovsky in the first and Pivonka in the second.
"Mike was the key tonight," Graves said. "He made some key saves for us. You can't complain about the one point because it was our sixth game in nine nights."
New York has a 6-2-2 record in the 10 games since Wayne Gretzky was sidelined with a neck injury.
Before the game the Rangers announced that Graves, their leading scorer and a potential free agent in the coming off-season, had signed a multi-year contract. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
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