Martin Brodeur took over another line in the NHL record book on Thursday night.
The NHL's all-time regular-season leader in wins and shutouts added the record for most Stanley Cup shutouts to his Hall of Fame resume by stopping all 26 Florida shots in New Jersey's 4-0 victory in Game 4 of their Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series.
Shutout No. 24 broke a tie with Patrick Roy that had existed since Brodeur blanked Carolina 1-0 on April 23, 2009. It was just his fourth in the last nine years since a 3-0 victory against Anaheim in Game 7 of the 2003 Stanley Cup Final. That shutout was the last of seven he had while leading the Devils to their third championship in nine years.
Florida became the 10th team to be shut out by Brodeur in the playoffs; he's shut out Boston six times, more than any other team.
The four-goal margin made Thursday's victory one of the easiest shutouts of Brodeur's playoff career. Eighteen of the 24 have been by three goals or fewer (four were 1-0 victories); four have been 4-0 games and two were 5-0 decisions.
The 26 saves made Thursday's shutout among the busiest of Brodeur's 24 playoff shutouts -- he faced 20 or fewer shots in nine of them and saw more than 26 just five times.
Brodeur and the Devils also finally did something they hadn't been able to do previously -- hang a loss on goaltender Scott Clemmensen. Brodeur's former backup was 5-0-0 lifetime against his old team, including a relief win in Florida's 4-3 victory in Game 3 on a night that saw Brodeur pulled from a playoff game for the first time in six years.
For the fourth time in as many games in their Western Conference Quarterfinal series, the Coyotes and Blackhawks went into overtime on Thursday night. It's just the second time in playoff history that a series has started with four consecutive OT games -- the other one was the 1951 Final, a series that saw Montreal beat Toronto in five games, all of which went past regulation.
Chicago also set a record by going into overtime for the sixth straight playoff game, including their last two in 2011. Unfortunately for the Hawks, they've lost four of the six -- including three of four in this series and the last two at home on goals by Mikkel Boedker.
Power source -- The St. Louis Blues' power play was one of the NHL's worst for much of the season. But it came alive down the stretch, and it's a major reason the Blues are one win away from sending the San Jose Sharks home for the summer.
St. Louis added another extra-man goal in Thursday's 2-1 victory at San Jose, a win that gave the Blues a 3-1 edge in the series. It was St. Louis' sixth power-play goal on 16 attempts in the four games, a 37.5 percent conversion rate that's a big jump from the Blues' regular-season rate of 16.7 percent.
The biggest reason for the Blues' success is center Andy McDonald, whose return from a concussion helped trigger the team's second-half improvement. McDonald has scored two of the six power-play goals in the playoffs (including one on Thursday) and assisted on the other four.
Holtby stopped 44 of 45 shots on Thursday as the Caps beat Boston 2-1 to even their Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series at two victories apiece. Holtby also beat the Caps 2-1 in Game 2, a double-overtime contest in which he made 43 saves.
In Boston's two wins, the Bruins had a combined total of 59 shots on goal and scored five times -- including four on 29 shots in a 4-3 victory in Game 3.
The Bruins didn't lose on Thursday for lack of trying. They outshot Washington 45-21 and attempted 83 shots to Washington's 44. It's the second time in the series the Bruins have taken more than 80 shots at goal -- and they've lost both times.