By John Schweibacher
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The New Jersey Devils’ playoff push will have to come on home ice, as they return home this week to begin a five-game homestand at Prudential Center.
10 of the Devils’ final 14 games will be at home, the most New Jersey has ever had over a stretch of games of that length at the end of a season. The Devils have played eight of their final 14 games at home seven previous times in club history, most recently at the end of the 2011-12 season.
Martin Brodeur made 29 saves but had his four-game winning streak snapped in the Devils’ 3-0 loss to Tampa Bay Saturday night. Brodeur stopped J.T. Brown’s penalty-shot attempt in the second period and has now saved nine of 12 in his NHL career, including his last four in a row:
· 10/30/99 vs. Valeri Zelepukin, Phi: Save
· 11/24/99 vs. Fredrik Olausson, Ana: Score
· 2/27/01 vs. Dave Scatchard, NYI: Save
· 12/15/05 vs. Marian Hossa, Atl (OT): Save
· 2/16/07 vs. Daniel Briere, Phi (PP): Save
· 10/10/08 vs. Kyle Okposo, NYI: Save
· 10/09/10 vs. Alex Ovechkin, Wsh: Score
· 11/01/10 vs. Henrik Sedin, Van: Score
· 3/17/12 vs. Chris Kunitz, Pit: Save
· 4/10/13 vs. Johnny Boychuk, Bos (SH): Save
· 4/20/13 vs. Quinton Howden, Fla: Save
· 3/15/14 vs. J.T. Brown, TB: Save
Tampa Bay goaltender Ben Bishop recorded his fifth shutout of the season with the 3-0 win over the Devils. It was only the third shutout by the Lightning in their 85 regular-season and 11 playoff games vs. New Jersey. The other Tampa Bay shutouts against the Devils were posted by Nikolai Khabibulin, a 2-0 win at Tampa Bay on November 23, 2001 and John Grahame, a 1-0 victory also at Tampa Bay on January 26, 2006.
Jaromir Jagr had a five-game point streak come to an end in the loss to the Lightning, but still leads the Devils with 58 points. Since moving to New Jersey for the 1982-83 season, only five players acquired in offseason moves by the Devils (trades, free agency, waiver claims, etc.) have posted more points in their first full season with the club.
· Stephane Richer: 1991-92, 29g-35a (64 pts)
· Mark Johnson: 1985-86, 21g-41a (62 pts)
· Mel Bridgman: 1983-84, 23g-38a (61 pts)
· Steve Thomas: 1995-96, 26g-35a (61 pts)
· Scott Stevens: 1991-92, 17g-42a (59 pts)
· Jaromir Jagr: 2013-14, 22g-36a (58 pts)
· Dave Pichette: 1984-85, 17g-40a (57 pts)
· Patrik Sundstrom: 1987-88, 15g-36a (51 pts)
· Jeff Friesen: 2002-03, 23g-28a (51 pts)
· Corey Millen: 1993-94, 20g-30a (50 pts)
Cory Schneider and the Devils could not make a 3-1 lead hold up last Friday night in Florida and lost to the Panthers 5-3. It was the first time all season that New Jersey did not come away with at least one point in a game in which they led after two periods (18-1-4). The Devils had not lost such a game since March 4, 2013, when they were beaten by the Maple Leafs, 4-2, at Toronto after leading 2-1 after 40 minutes.
It was just the eighth time this season that the Devils scored three-or-more goals in a game started by Schneider. New Jersey had been 5-0-1 when scoring at least three goals with Schneider in net before losing his last two starts; 7-4 at Detroit and 5-3 at Florida.
Schneider is now 5-2-1 in games in which the Devils have scored at least three goals, while Brodeur is 14-4-2 with at least three goals to work with.
Here is the goal support by the Devils in games started by Schneider and Brodeur, and their won-loss records:
Goals Brodeur Schneider
0 0-2-0 0-6-0
1 0-2-1 2-3-3
2 3-4-1 5-3-5
3 3-3-1 1-1-1
4 6-1-1 1-1-0
5 4-0-0 2-0-0
6 1-0-0 0-0-0
7 0-0-0 1-0-0
Brodeur recorded his 50th career regular-season win against the Flyers, stopping 30 shots in a 2-1 victory at Philadelphia last Tuesday night. The Flyers are the second team that Brodeur has reached the 50-win mark against, having beaten the Islanders 51 times.
The win was also the 100th by the Devils against the Flyers in franchise history, including a grand total of four victories by the Kansas City Scouts and Colorado Rockies in their eight seasons before the club moved to New Jersey for the 1982-83 season.
Here is the list of the 100 all-time wins by Devils/Rockies/Scouts goaltenders against the Philadelphia Flyers, half of which now belong to Brodeur:
· Martin Brodeur: 50
· Chris Terreri: 18
· Sean Burke: 7
· Alain Chevrier: 7
· Johan Hedberg: 6
· Chico Resch: 5
· Scott Clemmensen: 2
· Craig Billington: 1
· Ron Low: 1
· Michel Plasse: 1
· Doug Favell: 1
· Hardy Astrom: 1
Plus: Bryce Salvador — The Devils’ captain scored a goal in the loss to Florida, his first in the regular season since March 10, 2010 vs. the New York Rangers. Salvador did have four goals in the 2012 postseason.
Minus: Blanked — The Devils were shut out for the eighth time this season with the 3-0 setback in Tampa Bay.
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