The New Jersey Devils did something on Tuesday night that none of the Boston Bruins’ other five opponents thus far have been able to do – Score a power play goal…
…And that’s only way the Devils could score as Boston’s defense was smothering and net minder Tuukka Rask stonewalled all other New Jersey scoring opportunities, leading the Bruins to their 3rd straight victory, a 2-1 shootout win at TD Garden.
Devil’s David Clarkson scored a power play goal at 8:30 of the second period, ending an impressive streak of 24 straight penalty kills to give New Jersey a 1-0 lead. The Bruins did kill off four other Devils’ power plays and have now allowed a goal on just 1 of 29 opportunities.
The 1-0 lead held up into the 3rd period and looked like it might be enough to give New Jersey a road win, but Nathan Horton scored his third goal of the season with just 4:05 left in regulation to tie the match at 1-1.
After a scoreless overtime period, Tyler Seguin and Brad Marchand scored shootout goals while Rask allowed just one in six attempts, the first shot of the shootout by New Jersey’s Ilya Kovalchuk.
Seguin also scored on Boston’s first attempt in the shootout, then both goalies stopped the next four shots each before Marchand connected. Rask stopped a drive by Marek Zidlicky with his left pad to seal the victory.
Both Goaltenders were fantastic, Rask stopping 25 shots while Johan Hedberg denied 27 for the Devils who fell to 3-0-2 on the season but are still unbeaten in regulation.
Clarkson’s goal was a long range sniper shot from the left just after weaving across the blue line, firing into the upper right corner past Rask who was screened by Travis Zajac. That goal made the Bruins the last team in the NHL to give up a power play goal.
Horton’s goal was a beauty, getting a touch feed from David Krejci and zipping the puck past Hedberg, who was playing for the first time this season after Martin Brodeur started the Devils’ other four games.
With the win, the 5-0-1 Bruins have their best start to a season in 41 years, matching the 1970/71 club by earning points in their first six games and lead the Eastern Conference in points with 11.
The Devils now return home to host the New York Islanders on Thursday then travel to Pittsburgh for a date with the Penguins on Saturday while the Bruins prepare to host the Buffalo Sabres on Thursday and travel to Toronto on Saturday to take on the Maple Leafs.