NEWARK, N.J. -- The Devils ended their three-game season-opening homestand with a 2-1 record after beating the Los Angeles Kings 2-1 in a shootout on Thursday night at the Prudential Center. Ilya Kovalchuk and Zach Parise scored in the shootout for New Jersey.
WHAT IT MEANS: Depends on the health of the Devils’ all-world netminder. Martin Brodeur left Thursday’s game after the first period with what the team is calling “upper body soreness.”
The 39-year-old was struck with a Matt Greene point shot in what looked like the right shoulder with 7:57 remaining in the first. Johan Hedberg came in to replace him at the start of the second.
Brodeur played brilliantly in the first, stopping 10 of the 11 shots he faced, and ultimately galvanizing the Devils’ offense.
GOTTA GO TO MOOSE: In relief of Brodeur, Hedberg was flawless, stopping all 16 shots he faced in the final two periods and overtime.
PES: The Devils’ top line struck with 6:57 remaining in the first to tie the game. Parise got the puck behind the net and centered it out in front. Petr Sykora's shot was stopped, but Patrik Elias put in the rebound to knot things at 1.
For Elias, it was his first goal of the season and 336th of his career. He’s now 11 goals shy of tying the franchise’s all-time record (John MacLean, 347).
MISSED CHANCES: David Clarkson and Kovalchuk were both robbed on breakaways by Jonathan Quick.
ROOKIE WATCH: First-round pick Adam Larsson logged nearly 25 minutes and was an even rating.
He and partner Andy Greene were victimized early though, as Justin Williams tucked a pass under Larsson’s skate and through the slot to Simon Gagne for an easy tap-in which put Los Angeles out in front just 1 minute, 47 seconds in.
THAT'S SPECIAL: The Devils' penalty killers have killed off 14 straight power plays to open the season.
WELCOME BACK: Enforcer Cam Janssen played his first game with the Devils since 2006-07. He even picked up a roughing penalty on his first shift of the season.
UP NEXT: Their first road game of the season in Nashville on Saturday night.