With Yann Danis giving the NHL's winningest goaltender his first break of the season, the Devils continued their perfect start on the road with a 2-1 victory over the Boston Bruins at T.D.Garden. Danis, signed as a free agent after spending last season with the New York Islanders, made 31 saves and got the win when Dainius Zubrus jammed in a loose puck with 1:26 left in regulation.
"I was waiting for this one for a while," Danis said of his chance to play. "I was nervous before the game, but it's definitely good to get the first one out of the way.
"I want to show the guys that I can play and contribute," he said. "I never doubted myself, but a new team, coming in, new teammates, so you always want to make a good first impression. I think things went my way tonight."
Zubrus gave him the victory when he dove to beat the defense to a loose puck in the crease after Zach Parise slapped at Jamie Langenbrunner's flubbed shot and the puck trickled through goaltender Tim Thomas' pads. It was similar to David Clarkson's game-opening goal at 13:25 of the opening period, which came after Thomas didn't get all of Niclas Bergfors' shot.
"I was pretty sure I didn't have the first one," said Thomas, who finished with 29 saves. "The second one I thought maybe I did for a second and by the time I could check, there was nothing I could do."
Danis said playing with a lead was a big help -- as was the tight checking provided by his teammates.
"We scored first, and that always helps," he said. "We played a very good defensive game. Most of the shots came from the outside."
Boston's Patrice Bergeron tied the game 2:32 into the second, banging a rebound past Danis. But the Bruins were unable to score again, though Danis got some help from the crossbar in the final seconds.
The victory gave the Devils a 6-0-0 record on the road -- their best start ever away from home. However, they've lost four of five at the PrudentialCenter. They finish a quick two-game trip at TampaBay on Saturday afternoon.
The Bruins (5-5-1) continued their frustrating lose-one, win-one cycle with a disappointing defeat.
"We are never happy with losing games," defenseman Derek Morris said. "It was one bounce that went the wrong way, but I thought we had a hard effort tonight."
--John Kreiser, NHL.com
Material from team media and wire services was used in this report
|David Clarkson (3) ASST: Niclas Bergfors (4), Bryce Salvador (3)|
1 - 0 NJD
|Patrice Bergeron (4) ASST: Marco Sturm (5), Zdeno Chara (6)|
1 - 1 Tie
|Dainius Zubrus (2) ASST: Zach Parise (8), Jamie Langenbrunner (6)|
2 - 1 NJD
|Bryce Salvador Hooking against Daniel Paille|
|Bryce Salvador Tripping against Brad Marchand|
|Zdeno Chara Tripping against Dainius Zubrus|