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game recap

Sykora scores twice in Devils' 3-1 win

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 4:50 AM

NHL.com

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Sykora scores twice in Devils' 3-1 win
Buffalo Sabres 1, New Jersey Devils 3
Three Stars of the Game
Petr Sykora
1st
G: 2Shots: 3
A: 0Hits: 0
PTS: 2PIM: 2
+/-: 2TOI: 16:18
Patrik Elias
2nd
G: 0Shots: 0
A: 2Hits: 0
PTS: 2PIM: 0
+/-: 2TOI: 19:46
Adam Larsson
3rd
G: 0Shots: 1
A: 0Hits: 0
PTS: 0PIM: 0
+/-: 0TOI: 20:04
Petr Sykora's magical return to the NHL continued Wednesday night.

The 35-year-old, who played overseas last season, scored twice and Martin Brodeur made 22 saves and also added an assist as the New Jersey Devils earned a 3-1 victory against the Buffalo Sabres at the Prudential Center.

Zach Parise also scored for the Devils, who built a 3-0 lead in the second period. Patrik Elias assisted on both of Sykora's tallies.

"He should have had five," Parise said of Sykora. "It was one of those nights where the puck was following him all over."

Thomas Vanek scored for Buffalo, which received 20 saves from Ryan Miller.

Sykora opened the scoring with his ninth of the season at 9:52 of the first period. Brodeur sprung Sykora and Elias with a clearing pass up the middle. The veteran forwards weaved through the neutral zone before Elias dropped a pass between his legs for Sykora, who sent a soft shot that rolled in under Miller's pads.

"(I) looked for him to shoot through (defenseman) Robyn (Regehr)," Miller said. "He shot around him."

Sykora snapped a wrist shot over Miller's glove 1:26 into the second period to double the Devils' lead. Dainius Zubrus forced a turnover, and Elias set up Sykora for a one-timer with a perfect pass.

New Jersey signed Sykora to a one-year, $650,000 contract after he made the team following a training camp tryout. His 10 goals are tied with linemate Zubrus and rookie Adam Henrique for fourth on the team.

"I'm getting a chance to play with great players -- Patty and Zubie most games. Each guy brings something different," Sykora said. "Once in a while, you're going to have a game like this."

"He played well," Brodeur said of Sykora, with whom he won the Stanley Cup in 2000. "We brought him in to make a difference offensively. That was what the team was looking for."

Luke Adam appeared to cut the Sabres' deficit to 2-1 with a deflection at 5:28 of the second but the goal was disallowed after a video review showed that Adam struck the puck while his stick was above the crossbar.

"Thought it was good," Adam said. "Thought it was on its way down. It was a bit of a bad angle."

Parise made it 3-0 at 6:55 when he tipped in Mark Fayne's point. Vanek scored Buffalo's lone goal 1:14 later, his ninth point in six games.

The bad blood between the teams grew as the game progressed, and tempers flared midway through the second period. Buffalo's Paul Gaustad and Patrick Kaleta, New Jersey's Cam Janssen and Bryce Salvador were given 10-minute misconducts. Devils forward Eric Boulton received minor penalties for boarding and roughing, and Sabres center Cody McCormick was given a penalty for roughing.

The Sabres and New Jersey both had 23 shots on goal and neither connected on the power play. The Devils were 0 for 3 with the advantage, and the Sabres went 0 for 2.

"We just didn't finish," Vanek said.

Material from wire services and team media was used in this report
scoring summary
1st Period
09:52
NJD
Petr Sykora (9) ASST: Patrik Elias (18), Martin Brodeur (3)
1 - 0 NJD
2nd Period
01:26
NJD
Petr Sykora (10) ASST: Patrik Elias (19), Anton Volchenkov (5)
2 - 0 NJD
06:55
NJD
Zach Parise (12) ASST: Mark Fayne (5), Adam Henrique (18)
3 - 0 NJD
07:41
BUF
PPG - Thomas Vanek (18) ASST: Jordan Leopold (7), Drew Stafford (13)
3 - 1 NJD
3rd Period
NONE
penalty summary
1st Period
02:44
BUF
Zack Kassian  Holding the stick against  Tim Sestito
14:20
NJD
Zach Parise  Cross checking against  Andrej Sekera
2nd Period
02:27
BUF
Christian Ehrhoff  Tripping against  Eric Boulton
07:12
NJD
Bryce Salvador  Misconduct
07:12
NJD
Cam Janssen  Misconduct
07:12
BUF
Patrick Kaleta  Misconduct
07:12
BUF
Paul Gaustad  Misconduct
07:12
BUF
Cody McCormick  Roughing against  Eric Boulton
07:12
NJD
Eric Boulton  Boarding against  Andrej Sekera
07:12
NJD
Eric Boulton  Roughing against  Cody McCormick
11:42
NJD
Petr Sykora  Hi-sticking against  Christian Ehrhoff
13:51
NJD
Petr Sykora  Too many men on the ice
3rd Period
NONE
goalie stats
Ryan Miller
SA: 23TOI: 58:32
Saves: 20EV: 14 - 17
PIM: 0PP: 5 - 5
SV%: .870SH: 1 - 1
Martin Brodeur
SA: 23TOI: 60:00
Saves: 22EV: 18 - 18
PIM: 0PP: 4 - 5
SV%: .957SH: 0 - 0