NHL Game Summary - New Jersey at Tampa Bay
(Thursday, January 26th)
Final Score: Tampa Bay 1, New Jersey 0 (OT)
Tampa, FL (Sports Network) - Ruslan Fedotenko scored the game's only goal 2:22 into overtime as Tampa Bay earned a 1-0 victory over red-hot New Jersey at St. Pete Times Forum.
John Grahame stopped 20 shots to record his second straight shutout and help the Lightning to their fourth win in five tries.
The Devils, who lost for just the second time in 12 outings, received 32 saves from Martin Brodeur, but failed to convert five power-play opportunities.
Fedotenko ended the defensive struggle after wristing a wicked shot from the right circle over Brodeur's right shoulder off a feed from Nolan Pratt.
"I'll be honest, I just threw the puck at the net," Fedotenko said. "I was trying to find Richie (Brad Richards) in the slot. (The Devils) cover everything, so I just threw the puck on the net. I didn't even look where the goalie was."
Brodeur was otherwise outstanding on the night. He maintained the deadlock early in the overtime with a stellar stop of a Martin St.Louis chance, then forced the reigning Hart Trophy winner to miss the rebound wide.
After an uneventful first period, the Devils had a chance to break the stalemate after being awarded a power play midway through the second. However, Tampa Bay came up with the best scoring chance despite being shorthanded.
St. Louis broke free after New Jersey's Patrik Elias' shot attempt missed the net, but hit the post while in all alone on Brodeur.
The Devils had two more power plays before the end of the period but couldn't generate anything. But Brodeur kept things scoreless with several strong saves. The star netminder stopped 13 shots in the opening frame and eight more in the second.
Grahame had fewer opportunities than Brodeur, but made the most of them, including a nifty kick save on a blast by Elias with around nine minutes left in regulation.
"You know that in a game like this that one mistake could cost you," said Grahame. "You don't want to have that mistake on your side."
Tampa Bay nearly went ahead late in the third period, but Fredrik Modin hit the post from close range with just over two minutes left. The Lightning also failed on a man advantage near the end of regulation.
Both goaltenders posted shutouts in their last appearance. Grahame blanked Atlanta 2-0 on Saturday, while Brodeur was coming off a 4-0 victory at the Islanders on Tuesday...The Lightning had lost three of their last four at home coming in...New Jersey routed Tampa Bay 8-2 at St. Pete Times Forum on November 25, but the Lightning have won the other two matchups between the clubs this season.
01/26 23:57:05 ET