Saturday, April 19, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Devils rally past Ducks late, winning 4-3 in OT

Devils right wing Dainius Zubrus and left wing Patrik Elias celebrate a goal by Devils right wing Jaromir Jagr with Devils center Travis Zajac as Ducks goalie Jonas Hiller lies in the goal mouth. (Alex Gallardo/AP)
Devils right wing Dainius Zubrus and left wing Patrik Elias celebrate a goal by Devils right wing Jaromir Jagr with Devils center Travis Zajac as Ducks goalie Jonas Hiller lies in the goal mouth. (Alex Gallardo/AP)

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) - Jaromir Jagr scored the tying goal with 1:01 left in regulation, and the New Jersey Devils ended Anaheim's eight-game home winning streak to open the season with a 4-3 victory over the Ducks on Wednesday night.

Travis Zajac got credit for the winning goal at 2:58 of overtime, but the Ducks put it in their own net. Ben Lovejoy hit teammate Corey Perry with the puck while attempting to clear the crease, and it caromed past Jonas Hiller to end the longest season-opening home winning streak in Anaheim history.

Ryan Getzlaf scored the tiebreaking power-play goal, and Nick Bonino had a goal and an assist for the NHL-leading Ducks, who have lost five straight. Anaheim was the league's only remaining unbeaten home team.

Martin Brodeur stopped 22 shots for the Devils.

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  • After 41 scoreless minutes for New Jersey, Jagr tied the game with Martin Brodeur pulled for an extra attacker. Patrik Elias got the puck behind the net and found Jagr in front for his 689th NHL goal.

    Elias had three assists in the Devils' opener of a three-game California trip. Marek Zidlicky and Eric Gelinas scored power-play goals in the first period after an incorrect high-sticking double minor call against Teemu Selanne.

    New Jersey has won four of five.

    Matt Beleskey also scored for the Ducks, still on top of the overall NHL standings despite going 0-3-2 in their last five. Hiller made 21 saves in just his second start in seven games.

    Dustin Penner had two assists for the Ducks, who stumbled home to friendly Honda Center after a winless four-game East Coast road trip. They were off to the longest winning streak to start a season in the franchise's two-decade history.

    Anaheim also lost defenseman Francois Beauchemin in the second period to an upper-body injury.

    The game brought together three of the NHL's most accomplished active players. Jagr is the 10th-leading goal-scorer in NHL history, and Selanne is right behind him with 678 goals. Brodeur is merely the NHL's career leader in games played, victories and shutouts.

    Beleskey put the Ducks ahead in the first period with his first goal of the season on a slick pass from Hampus Lindholm, their impressive rookie defenseman. Beleskey returned earlier this week from a 19-game absence with an upper-body injury.

    Moments later, New Jersey capitalized on a break from a blown call. Devils defenseman Andy Greene was left with a bloody mouth after a high-stick to the face, and Selanne was whistled for a double minor - but a video replay clearly showed Zidlicky hit his teammate in the face while tussling with Mathieu Perreault. Selanne's stick was on the ice.

    Zidlicky scored in the slot early in the four-minute power play, and Gelinas put the Devils ahead on a cross-ice pass from Adam Henrique moments later.

    But Anaheim got a two-man advantage early in the second period, and Bonino evened it with his career-high sixth goal of the season.

    Getzlaf put Anaheim ahead during a power play late in the period, ripping a vicious slap shot into the top corner past a screened Brodeur for the Ducks captain's 12th goal of a stellar season. Getzlaf had his first hat trick in his last home appearance.

    NOTES: The NHL's competition committee recommended video review of all high-sticking double minor penalties last spring, but the league rejected the idea in September. ... New Jersey managed just three shots in the second period, two of those in the final seconds. Anaheim didn't get its first shot of the third period until 6:25 remained. ... The clubs met for the first time since February 2012.

    GREG BEACHAM The Associated Press
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