The Devils have come out of the All-Star break on fire.
They romped the Penguins, 5-2, on Sunday afternoon to cap off a 4-0 week in which they scored 20 goals.
The newly formed Zach Parise-Patrik Elias-Ilya Kovalchuk line was unstoppable against Pittsburgh, combining for six points, while Anton Volchenkov finished off a pretty passing combination to record his first goal in 104 games. Dainius Zubrus scored the Devils’ 13th shorthanded goal of the season -- more than any other team. And David Clarkson scored into an empty net off a flip pass from Martin Brodeur. Clarkson has now tallied 20 goals for the first time in his career.
Kovalchuk has three consecutive three-point games, while newcomer Alexei Ponikarovsky has a three-game point scoring streak (goal, four assists) and Parise has five goals in his last four games. Brodeur has won his last three starts after making 28 saves on Sunday afternoon.
The Devils went into the All-Star break on a three-game losing streak, but have since been playing like the best team in the NHL.
They needed a lucky bounce in the final minute to take care of the Rangers and a two-goal comeback to best the Canadiens, but they steamrolled past the Flyers and routed the Penguins to complete a three-game Atlantic Division sweep and get their season-high tying fourth straight victory.
Travis Zajac and Henrik Tallinder remain out, but rookie Adam Henrique returned to the lineup on Sunday afternoon, and Andy Greene is back.
The Devils, who moved within one point of fifth-place Pittsburgh and have a game in hand, will take on the Blueshirts again on Tuesday night at the Garden -- perhaps after a Super Bowl championship parade in the city.