NHL Game Summary - NY Rangers at New Jersey
(Friday, December 12th)
Final Score: New Jersey 8, NY Rangers 5
Newark, NJ (Sports Network) - Brian Gionta registered a goal and three assists, leading the New Jersey Devils, who had a four-goal lead evaporate, to their fourth straight victory with a 8-5 decision over the New York Rangers at the Prudential Center.
Patrik Elias and Dainius Zubrus both had a goal and two assists for the Devils, who have won nine of 10 games overall and bested the Rangers in regulation for the first time since February 20, 2007. Travis Zajac scored twice, and Zach Parise collected a career-high four assists, while Scott Clemmensen made 31 saves.
Nikolai Zherdev posted a goal and three helpers to pace New York, which has dropped four of its last six tests and had taken nine of 10 overall from the Devils entering Friday. Scott Gomez had a goal and two assists, while Henrik Lundqvist was victimized eight times on 34 shots.
After Zubrus found the back of the net, giving the Devils a seemingly comfortable 5-1 advantage with 8:27 to go in the middle stanza, New York began to chip away at the deficit.
On the wraparound, Zherdev put the puck in off Clemmensen's right skate with 4:14 remaining, then Gomez tallied in the final minutes of the period to make it 5-3.
New York closed to within one early in the third period. Chris Drury won the draw cleanly back to Paul Mara, and his drive eluded Clemmensen at the 1:28 mark.
Ryan Callahan completed the comeback, firing a bad-angle shot under the right arm of Clemmensen with 8:42 remaining.
The euphoria didn't last long for the Rangers, as Elias scored 11 seconds later to put New Jersey back on top. The Devils then capitalized on a giveaway in the neutral zone to restore a two-goal lead. Gionta took a fed from Zubrus, drove to the net, switched to the backhand and tucked the puck home with 6:56 left in regulation.
Jamie Langenbrunner added a tally two minutes later for New Jersey.
New York was awarded the first power play of the contest, but it was the Devils who struck for the game's opening tally. Although the Rangers won the draw at the right circle, Bryce Salvador managed to chip the puck past New York defenseman Dan Girardi at the point.
John Madden roared down the left boards, gathered the loose disc and dished ahead to a charging Jay Pandolfo, who skated in alone and fired a quick shot between Lundqvist's pads at the 4:04 mark of the first period.
New York tied the game with 4:06 remaining in the frame on Markus Naslund's team-leading 11th tally of the season.
The Devils, though, regained the lead a minute later on Zajac's power-play goal.
Zajac lit the lamp again one minute into the second period, and Oduya gave the Devils the a three-goal edge. With New York on the man advantage, Parise made a drop pass to Gionta, whose one-timer from the right circle rang off the far post. Lundqvist appeared to cover the puck, but Oduya followed up the play and poked it in at 7:31.
It was New Jersey's second shorthanded goal of the game and the 10th given up by the Rangers this season, the most in the NHL.
New York finished 0-for-9 on the power play, while the Devils scored once on four opportunities...Drury recorded two assists...The eight goals allowed by Lundqvist matched his career-high.
12/13 02:15:15 ET