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Devils beat Rangers, even Eastern finals
New York, NY (Sports Network) - Martin Brodeur made 23 saves and David Clarkson scored the winner early in the third period as the New Jersey Devils took a 3-2 win over the New York Rangers in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Finals.
Ryan Carter and Ilya Kovalchuk also tallied for the Devils, who evened this series at a game each after getting blanked in the opener on Monday.
"We have to take care of our business at home," said New Jersey head coach Peter DeBoer. "This is a tough building and we're glad to get a split, but now we have to take care of business at home."
Marc Staal and Chris Kreider had power play goals for the Rangers, who got 24 saves from Henrik Lundqvist in the loss.
"You need to improve every game as a hockey team," said New York head coach John Tortorella.
The series switches to Newark as the next two contests will be played at Prudential Center. Game 3 is set for Saturday afternoon.
New Jersey took a 3-2 lead at the 2:31 mark of the third period when Adam Henrique's shot from the right point was deflected into the net by Clarkson.
From there, Brodeur shut the door on the hosts, turning aside all eight Rangers shots in the final 20 minutes.
The Rangers got Lundqvist out of the net with over a minute to play, but the Devils kept any shots from getting through.
The first and only goal of the opening period went to New Jersey. Skating on the power play, Marek Zidlicky got the puck at the right point and slid over to the high slot. He fed the disc to the left circle where Kovalchuk snapped a heavy wrister into the right corner at the 13:39 mark.
New York recorded just one shot in the final half of the opening period and notched just five in the frame.
"They came in here really desperate and we had to match it," said Lundqvist. "I thought they were a lot better in the first. We had to play better and we did. So that's a good thing because we had a chance to win this game even though we didn't play our best."
The Rangers, though, took the lead in the second with a pair of goals.
The first came just 2:23 into the frame. A shot by Marc Staal at the right circle deflected off a Devil in front and went wide. However, the puck caromed off the back boards and slid off Brodeur before going into the net.
"It's a tough place to play and there's so many bad bounces, the ice isn't good and the boards are tough," said Brodeur. "Mentally it's a tough game to play here because you have to look at the puck all game long."
Then, on another power play at 12:19, Anton Stralman fired a shot on net from near the right boards that hit off Kreider in front and sailed into the net for his fourth playoff goal.
The Devils tied the game with 1:51 to play in the second as a slap shot from Bryce Salvador up high was redirected by Carter in front for his second of the playoffs.
Salvador had two assists in the game...New Jersey was 1-for-3 on the power play while New York was 2-for-4...The game was delayed for several minutes in the second period when the door to the Devils' penalty box got stuck...New York has won four of the five playoff series against the Devils.
05/17 01:59:27 ET
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