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Devils now 4-1 in last five games

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) -- The New Jersey Devils got the early
jump on the Chicago Blackhawks and never let up.

Jamie Langenbrunner scored the first of his two goals only 10
seconds into the game Saturday, leading the Devils to a 5-1
victory. New Jersey built a 3-0 lead in the opening period and
cruised thereafter.

"If you get one goal early and then fall off your game, it's
not going to do you a whole lot of good,'' said Langenbrunner who
got his first goals of the season. "We stuck with it and kept
making it tough on them.''

Jay Pandolfo also scored as the line of Langenbrunner, Pandolfo
and John Madden combined for six points. Their primary role is
checking the other teams' top line, so any offense is a welcome
contribution.

"Madden's line was right there playing against the top line and
shutting them down,'' Devils coach Pat Burns said. "They get more
opportunities because you play against an offensive line. When you
play your position well defensively, you cause turnovers when the
defense is thinking to go one way and you get it going the other.''

Joe Nieuwendyk and Patrik Elias added goals in the third period,
and Martin Brodeur made 18 saves as New Jersey improved to 4-1 in
its last five games.

Lyle Odelein scored for Chicago, which had been unbeaten in four
(3-0-1) games. The Devils went immediately to the attack as Madden
rode Blackhawks defenseman Alexander Karpovtsev off the puck to
create the scoring chance for Langenbrunner at the goalmouth.

That line struck again at 3:32, again attacking the net.
Pandolfo knocked in the puck as it rolled through the crease for
his first goal.

Langenbrunner stripped Chris Simon of the puck for an unassisted
score with 1:41 left.

"I know that I was at fault there,'' said Simon who made his
Blackhawks debut along with Andrei Nikolishin. "You can't make
those kind of mistakes.''

New Jersey outshot Chicago 11-4 in the first period with the
shots reflecting the lopsided level of play.

Chicago regrouped with a more competitive period in the second,
and was rewarded when Odelein beat Brodeur at 1:19.

The Devils stamped out any Chicago comeback hopes when
Nieuwendyk scored 36 seconds into the third period for a 4-1 lead.
Elias added a goal at 7:51.

"Give the Devils credit,'' Blackhawks coach Brian Sutter said.
"They played hard. They controlled the neutral zone and made it
very difficult for us.''

Game notes
The Devils lost defenseman Andrei Zyuzin on waivers to the
Minnesota Wild. Zyuzin appeared in one game and had one assist. ...
Simon and Nikolishin were acquired Friday from the Washington
Capitals. ... Chicago last posted a win in the series on Dec. 30,
1997. ...Steve Passmore is 0-4-0 against New Jersey. ... Chicago's
Jon Klemm appeared in his 500th NHL game.