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Devils take nothing for granted

by Brian Compton
RALEIGH, N.C. -- There were no champagne celebrations after the New Jersey Devils earned a 3-2 overtime victory against the Carolina Hurricanes on Sunday night, and rightfully so.

They haven't won anything yet, nor are they content with having a 2-1 lead in this best-of-7 series that continues Tuesday night at the RBC Center (7:30 p.m. ET, TSN2, RIS).

"We're not satisfied at all," Devils coach Brent Sutter said during an intimate media session Monday afternoon that lasted nearly 30 minutes. "What we've done is we've gotten two wins and the team we're playing has one. It's still the team that wins four. Our focus is Game 4 now. It was important to come in here and play well, which we did. We played a real good road game. We found a way to win it. That's what hockey's about this time of year -- you've got to find ways to win."

New Jersey did that when Travis Zajac scored for the first time since March 17 at 4:58 of overtime. Zajac says his team received Sutter's message loud and clear.

"It's a long series," Zajac said. "We're fortunate to be up 2-1 now and we've got to just continue to play the way we've been playing and not worry about anything else. We've got to forget about the games that have happened and worry about tomorrow."

Truth be told, the Devils could be up 3-0 had the bounces gone more their way in Game 2. Carolina has yet to have a lead in regulation in this series -- a stat that Sutter could care less about.

"It's 2-1 ... that's what it is," Sutter said. "These last two games have been very tight; two hard-fought games. For the most part, they were pretty well played games by both teams. You knew it was going to be tight and you knew it was going to be a hard-fought series, and that's what it is. Both teams are playing hard, and that's the way it's supposed to be."
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