On an afternoon when Martin Brodeur set the record for minutes played by an NHL goaltender, he needed to play a few extra – and face several shootout attempts – in order to help the New Jersey Devils put away the Boston Bruins.
Zach Parise and Jamie Langenbrunner scored in the shootout as the Devils beat the Bruins 2-1 at TD Garden for the second time this season and snapped Boston’s four-game winning streak.
Friday’s win wasn’t sealed until Langenbrunner skated in and fired a shot past Tuukka Rask in the third round of the penalty-shot tiebreaker after Brodeur had stopped David Krejci.
"It’s been nothing short of spectacular for a while," Langenbrunner said of Brodeur’s performance. "He’s been a heck of a player for us for a long time and it’s great to see him get another NHL record."
Blake Wheeler put the Bruins ahead temporarily in the second round by beating Brodeur to the glove side, but Parise quickly answered with a deke and a shot just inside the left post that Rask couldn’t get his right pad across in time to stop.
Brodeur surpassed Patrick Roy’s mark for minutes played early in the second period, finishing the game with 60,275 for his career. During a play stoppage shortly after the record was set, the public address announcer informed the fans of the record and many in the sellout crowd of 17,565 stood and applauded.
"That was nice," Brodeur said. "You can tell it’s a real hockey place here, and even though they’re not Devils fans or Marty Brodeur fans, I think they recognize some of the stuff and what’s going on in hockey. Around the League, when you (reach) milestones people have a lot of respect even though after it’s over they’re going to boo you for sure."
He also held Boston scoreless into the third. The Devils had a 1-0 lead and Brodeur was looking to tie Terry Sawchuk’s record of 103 shutouts.
Wheeler ended any thoughts of that happening by scoring just 12 seconds into the third. Brodeur, however, kept the game tied with a number of big saves – he denied Marc Savard in the final seconds on a point-blank shot after defenseman Colin White broke his stick.
''I got it off good,'' Savard said. ''I think I got him under the arm a bit. I knew I didn't have much time on the clock.''
"I was trying to battle real hard and be competitive," Brodeur said. "I think this team, with their shots, there’s always a guy going to the net and so they have a lot of traffic, so I just wanted to make sure I was in good position all the time. I’m making the first save, guys are there to recover rebounds, and that makes my life a lot easier when you’re a goaltender."
Parise extended his points streak to nine games by scoring his 14th goal of the season at 9:45 of the second to get New Jersey on the board first.
Rask, making his sixth straight start for the ailing Tim Thomas, finished with 36 saves.
''At the end of the game I thought we had a lot of good chances. We were hoping we could squeak one in there to get the game-winner,'' Bruins coach Claude Julien said.
The Devils, already without regulars Rob Niedermayer, Jay Pandolfo, Dainius Zubrus, Paul Martin and Johnny Oduya, lost forward David Clarkson early in the first period when he took a Zdeno Chara shot off his ankle. Clarkson didn’t return and is unlikely to play Saturday afternoon when New Jersey hosts the New York Islanders.
"I think it doesn’t look good," Lemaire said. "We’ll have news (Saturday), but it doesn’t look good."
Parise said the Devils will respond the same way they have all season, relying on new additions like veteran Dean McAmmond and Lowell call-ups like Tim Sestito, Mark Fraser and Matthew Corrente to fill the voids.
"Someone else is going to have to step in and fill that role," Parise said. "(Clarkson's) been a really important part to our team this year, but I guess it’s just another opportunity that the guys from Lowell have really taken advantage of this year, so we’ll see what happens."
Material from wire services and team broadcast media was used in this report.
1 - 0 NJD