Devils center Patrik Elias stands alone.
Elias became the franchise’s all-time leader in goals scored with 348 after scoring twice in the Devils’ 5-3 victory in Montreal on Saturday night. The 35-year-old came into the game needing just one goal to tie John MacLean (347) for the top spot.
“I’m thrilled for the career I’ve been having so far and like I said, I hope I have a lot left in me,” Elias told MSG Network.
The 35-year-old Czech native has played his entire 16-year career in New Jersey (993 games) after being selected by the Devils in the second round of the 1994 NHL Entry Draft. He also holds franchise records for most points in a single season (96) and game-winning goals (75), among others.
“He’s one of the most talented people I know, and he wants to win. He’s a special player,” coach Peter DeBoer said.
Elias moved into the top spot on the franchise’s all-time goals list at 1:31 of the third period, executing a 2-on-0 give-and-go with long-time teammate Petr Sykora after Dainius Zubrus caused a turnover with a great forecheck.
“It was a nice little play,” Elias said.
Elias said only a couple of his teammates congratulated him on his latest record after the game.
“I don’t think too many of the guys know actually,” he said. “That’s okay, though.”
Captain Zach Parise was one of them.
“I wasn’t aware of that, that’s good for him,” Parise said. “I guess no one really tells us those kinds of things, that’s awesome. I’m sure he’ll tell us later.”
Elias tied MacLean with a power play goal in the second. He scored his first NHL goal on Dec. 12, 1996 in Boston.
“It went off my skate,” Elias recalled. “They had to go upstairs to review it. You never forget your first one.”
Elias scored a career-best 40 goals in 2000-01, and has had four 30-plus goal seasons. He’s amassed at least 20 goals 10 times.
The Devils (18-13-1) have now won four straight games. They outscored the Canadiens 2-0 in the third.
“I think the third was one of the strongest [periods] we’ve had in a long time,” Elias said. “They had nothing.”
The Devils retired Scott Niedermayer’s No. 27 jersey on Friday night. Elias’ No. 26 will soon follow.