By John Schweibacher
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The New Jersey Devils were eliminated from playoff contention on Sunday with their 4-1 loss to the Rangers. It is the second time in the last three seasons that the Devils will not be in the postseason.
New Jersey’s playoff misses have come in the seasons directly before and after their playing in the Stanley Cup Finals, something that has only happened six other times in NHL history since the league assumed control of the Stanley Cup before the 1926-27 season:
•NJ Devils: 2010-11 — Missed playoffs
2011-12 — Lost Finals
2012-13 — Missed playoffs
•Carolina: 2003-04 – Missed playoffs*
2005-06 — Won Finals
2006-07 — Missed playoffs
•Edmonton: 2003-04 – Missed playoffs*
2005-06 — Lost Finals
2006-07 — Missed playoffs
•Anaheim: 2001-02 — Missed playoffs
2002-03 — Lost Finals
2001-02 — Missed playoffs
•Washington: 1996-97 – Missed playoffs
1999-98 — Lost Finals
1998-99 — Missed playoffs
•NY Rangers: 1948-49 — Missed playoffs
1949-50 — Lost Finals
1950-51 — Missed playoffs
•Chicago: 1942-43 — Missed playoffs
1943-44 — Lost Finals
1944-45 — Missed playoffs
(*NHL Lockout canceled 2004-05 season)
Patrik Elias scored two goals for the Devils as they erased a 2-0 deficit to beat the Panthers, 6-2, on Saturday. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, it was the 51st time that Elias has scored at least two goals in an NHL game, but the first since December 17, 2011, when he scored twice at Montreal.
The total of 92 regular-season games that Elias played between that game and the one on Saturday represents the second-longest multi-goal-game drought of his career. He went 105 games between multiple-goal games from November 9, 2001 vs. Toronto (hat trick) to January 22, 2003 at San Jose (scored twice).
Martin Brodeur stopped Quinton Howden’s penalty-shot attempt in the third period of the win against Florida. Brodeur has now saved both of the penalty shots against him this season, and 8 of the 11 he has faced in his NHL career. Five of the attempts have come over the past three seasons, while the first six were spread out over Brodeur’s first 15
•Stopped penalty shot (Valeri Zelepukin): October 30, 1999.
•Allowed penalty-shot goal (Fredrik Olausson): November 24, 1999
•Stopped penalty shot (Dave Scatchard): February 27, 2001
•Stopped penalty shot (Marian Hossa): December 15, 2005
•Stopped penalty shot (Daniel Briere): December 16, 2007
•Stopped penalty shot (Kyle Okposo): October 10, 2008
•Allowed penalty-shot goal (Alexander Ovechkin): October 9, 2010
•Allowed penalty-shot goal (Henrik Sedin): November 1, 2010
•Stopped penalty shot (Chris Kunitz): March 17, 2012
•Stopped penalty shot (Johnny Boychuck): April 10, 2013
•Stopped penalty shot (Quinton Howden): April 20, 2013
Brodeur reached another career milestone last week with his 3-0 victory against the Flyers in Philadelphia. It was Brodeur’s 300th regular-season road win, making him the first goaltender in NHL history to reach that plateau.
According to the Elias Sports Bureau, only two other NHL goaltenders have won 200 or more road games: Ed Belfour (206) and Patrick Roy (203).
The only active goaltender with even half as many career road wins as Brodeur is Evgeni Nabokov of the Islanders, whose shootout victory at Winnipeg this past Saturday was his 152nd road win.
Brodeur has won 367 games in New Jersey (266 at the Meadowlands and 101 at Prudential Center), and he also posted a win in a neutral site game — a 5-2 win vs. Quebec in Minneapolis back on March 27, 1994.
Brodeur’s shutout was his second of the season and both have come against Philadelphia (3-0 in the home opener back on January 22). It was the 121st shutout of his career and his 11th against the Flyers, the most against any opponent (Islanders are second with 10).
Plus: Martin Brodeur — He assisted on Elias’ power-play goal in the win against the Panthers, the 42nd helper of his NHL career. He now has one goal and 2 assists (3 points) on the season.
Minus: Falling Behind — New Jersey is now 4-17-6 on the year when allowing the first goal. The Devils are 13-1-4 when scoring first this season.
How disappointing did you feel this season was, Devils fans? Let us know in the comments section below…