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game recap

Devils defeat Penguins in OT, extend point streak to 7

Hamilton wins it on power play at 2:07; Hughes has goal, assist for New Jersey

by Mike G. Morreale @mikemorrealeNHL / Staff Writer

Recap: NJD 2, PIT 1 - F/OT

Hamilton lifts Devils past Penguins in OT

Dougie Hamilton scored in overtime and Jack Hughes earned his 30th goal of the season to lead the Devils past the Penguins, 2-1

  • 05:02 •

NEWARK, N.J. -- Dougie Hamilton scored a power-play goal at 2:07 of overtime to give the New Jersey Devils a 2-1 win against the Pittsburgh Penguins at Prudential Center on Sunday.

Hamilton won it with a one-timer from the top of the left face-off circle off a pass from Jack Hughes.

"We had a couple plays set, and I just found some space over there and was just hoping to get it and just took a swing at it," Hamilton said. "It's pretty hard to score on a goalie from that far out, so I just tried to shoot as hard as I could, and happy it went in."

Pittsburgh appeared to have scored 39 seconds earlier, but the goal by defenseman Marcus Pettersson was disallowed because they were penalized for too many men on the ice.

"I was playing that rush so I kind of knew right away that it wasn't a legal play," Hamilton said. "I was playing a 1-on-1, and then all of a sudden there's a guy there, but it was huge call and good for us to kind of turn it around and capitalize on the chance."

Video: PIT@NJD: Hamilton hammers a PPG in OT

Hamilton and Hughes each had a goal and an assist for the Devils (30-12-4), who are 6-0-1 in their past seven games.

"We were coming off a good road trip (4-0-1), and this was the first of four games in six days," New Jersey coach Lindy Ruff said. "I thought we played the game the right way. We didn't give up a lot of opportunities, gave ourselves a chance to win."

Vitek Vanecek made 25 saves to extend his winning streak to seven games, which is tied for the longest in the NHL this season. He is also the first Devils goalie to win seven straight starts since 2010-11 (Martin Brodeur, Johan Hedberg).

"It's seven wins, but I'm trying to not think about that coming into the game," Vanecek said. "I'm just playing that game and just focusing on the game."

Sidney Crosby scored, and Tristan Jarry made 23 saves for the Penguins (23-15-8), who are 2-0-2 in their past four games. 

"We played well enough to win, and the too many men penalty was the right call," Pittsburgh coach Mike Sullivan said. "I thought we did a really good job defending. It boils down to details."

Video: PIT@NJD: Vanecek robs Poehling with save in 3rd

Hughes scored 56 seconds into the first period to give the Devils a 1-0 lead. He skated end to end and used defenseman Brian Dumoulin as a screen before scoring short side from the right face-off circle. The goal was Hughes' 30th of the season and extended his point streak to five games (four goals, five assists).

Crosby tied it 1-1 at 6:25 of the first when he received a return pass from Jeff Petry at the center point and scored through a screen. 

"We had some looks and they didn't go in," Crosby said. "They got a power play and that was the difference. We have to find that type of game consistently, and that will give us a chance to win.

"They have speed and mobile defensemen. They're a good team."

Vanecek's best save came at 2:14 of the third period, when he dove to his right to deny Ryan Poehling on a shot from the slot that deflected off his blocker and the crossbar.

"I saw the shot behind the net, and I saw the puck was behind me, and I wasn't sure what to do," Vanecek said. "I just laid down and don't know after that what happened. I felt like it hit my blocker and then post. I was just battling for the rebound."

NOTES: Crosby has scored 539 goals, moving ahead of Keith Tkachuk for 33rd in NHL history. Crosby also tied Stan Mikita for 24th in NHL history with 379 even-strength goals. ... Hughes became the third-fastest player (46 games) in Devils/Kansas City Scouts/Colorado Rockies history to score 30 goals in a season (Paul Gardner, 44 games with the Rockies in 1977-78; Claude Lemieux, 45 games with the Devils in 1991-92). The last New Jersey player to score 30 goals in 60 or fewer games was Zach Parise in 2008-09 (52 games). 

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