Rapid Reaction: Devils 2, Isles 1

March, 10, 2012
3/10/12
9:23
PM ET
What it means: The Devils scored two goals in a matter of 14 seconds in the last 1:39 of play to beat the Islanders 2-1 for their third straight win. With rookie netminder Anders Nilsson less than two minutes away from his second straight shutout against New Jersey, David Clarkson squeaked in his 28th of the season to knot the teams at 1. A bad boarding penalty by PA Parenteau led to a Devils power-play soon after and defenseman Marek Zidlicky tallied the game-winner for his first goal of the season and a home-and-home sweep of the Isles.

Tavares tallies against Devils: With his 27th goal of the season, John Tavares snapped a scoreless draw and recorded his first point of the season against the Devils. Burying a beneath-the-goal-line feed from linemate PA Parenteau, Tavares gave the Islanders a 1-0 lead at 6:46 in the third. Heading into Saturday's match, Tavares had only five points (two goals, three assists) in 16 career games against the Devils.

Scoreless streak ended: Tavares' third-period marker ended a lengthy scoreless streak by backup goaltender Johan Hedberg dating back over a month. Hedberg, who blanked the Capitals 5-0 March 2 in his last start prior to Saturday, last gave up a goal to St. Louis' Patrik Berglund February 9 in New Jersey's 4-2 shootout loss to the Blues.

Stingy Swedes: With one scoreless period in the books, both goaltenders made clutch saves to preserve the 0-0 draw through two. Hedberg denied Micheal Haley on a breakaway with 3:13 remaining, while Nilsson made a quick stab to snag Dainius Zubrus' shot from the left circle with 1:16 remaining. The Devils outshot the Islanders 15-7 in the middle frame.

Grabner hurt:Michael Grabner suffered a foot injury early in the third period. Grabner was writhing in pain on the bench after taking Ilya Kovalchuk's slapshot from the bue-line to the right skate; he eventually left the bench and hobbled off to the trainer's room. The 24-year-old has struggled this season to match expectations following a superb rookie campaign in which he recorded 34 goals. Grabner has been limited to only 15 in his second year with the Islanders.

Emergency recall: Bridgeport bruiser Micheal Haley was recalled on an emergency basis for Thursday’s game with both Matt Martin and Casey Cizikas battling the flu. Haley has 14 goals, 8 assists and 101 penalty minutes for Bridgeport this season. Milan Jurcina was a healthy scratch for the Islanders; defenseman Dylan Reese replaced him in the lineup.

Up next: Islanders at Rangers, Sunday at 7 p.m.; Devils vs. Flyers, Sunday at 7 p.m.
Katie Strang covers the NHL for ESPN.com. She is a graduate of Michigan State University and the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.
Follow Katie on Twitter »  Chat archive »

SPONSORED HEADLINES

Comments

You must be signed in to post a comment

Already have an account?