By John Schweibacher
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Zach Parise scored two goals and Ilya Kovalchuk tallied once as the Devils got their first win of the season, 4-2, against the Hurricanes on Monday afternoon.

Due to the knee injury which sidelined Parise for most of the 2010-11 season, the Devils’ new captain has played only 40 regular-season games and five playoff games with Kovalchuk since New Jersey acquired Kovalchuk from the Atlanta Thrashers in a trade back on February 4th, 2010.

According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Monday’s game marked only the sixth time that the two star left wings have scored goals for the Devils in the same game.

Johan Hedberg picked up the win in New Jersey’s 4-2 victory over the Hurricanes Monday afternoon.

It marked just the 3rd time since his rookie year of 1993-94 that Martin Brodeur did not record the Devils’ first win of a season. Chris Terreri got the win in New Jersey’s season opener against Tampa Bay back in 1993-94 and Kevin Weekes picked up the Devils’ first victory of the 2007-08 campaign in their second game of that season against Florida.

Petr Sykora had an assist in New Jersey’s 4-2 win over Carolina but is still looking for his 1st goal in his return to the Devils. Once he scores, Sykora will have the third-longest stretch between goals for New Jersey.

Here are the longest gaps between goals in separate stints with Devils:

·       Brendan Shanahan: 17 years, 2 months & 20 days

(3/31/91 vs. NY Islanders—1/19/09 at Nashville).

·       Jim Dowd: 10 years, 11 months & 20 days

(11/18/95 vs. Buffalo–11/7/06 vs. Carolina).

·       Petr Sykora:  9 years, 5 months & 28 days & counting

(4/12/02 vs. Montreal–  ?

·       Brian Rolston: 8 years, 11 months & 9 days

(10/27/99 vs. St. Louis–10/16/08 at Atlanta).

·       Jason Arnott: 8 years, 7 months & 8 days

(3/1/02 vs. Toronto–10/7/10 vs. Dallas).

·       Bobby Holik: 6 years, 8 months & 13 days

(4/1/02) at NY Islanders–12/13/08 vs. Buffalo).

·       Tommy Albelin: 6 years, 4 months & 19 days

(10/19/95 vs. Detroit–3/10/02 at Dallas).

·       Pascal Rheaume: 6 years & 23 days (2/20/97 at

Florida–3/15/03 vs.  NY Rangers).

·       Vladimir Malakhov: 5 years, 6 months & 18 days

(4/2/00 at Tampa Bay–10/20/05 at Pittsburgh).

·       Stephane Richer: 5 years, 11 months, 27 days

(3/28/96 at St. Louis–3/27/02 at Pittsburgh).

·       Claude Lemieux: 4 years, 6 months & 9 days

(4/28/95 vs. Florida–11/6/99 vs. Toronto).

·       Alexander Mogilny:  4 years, 6 months & 4 days

(4/3/01 at Washington–10/7/05 at Philadelphia).

·       Mike Rupp: 2 years, 8 months & 26 days

(2/14/04 vs. Carolina–11/9/06 vs. Chicago).

The Devils first road game of the season will be this Saturday night in Nashville. The match-up will also be New Jersey’s first against a Western Conference team this season and the first of a six out of seven stretch vs. west opponents this month.

Nashville won the lone meeting between the two clubs last season, 3-1, at Prudential Center. New Jersey has gone 6-1-1 all-time against the Predators in Nashville.

Barry Trotz has been the only coach the Predators have had since they joined the NHL for the 1998-99 season. Trotz, who was named to the position in the summer of 1997, has the fourth-longest tenure with his current team among managers and coaches in the four major sports:

·       Tony La Russa MLB St. Louis 10/23/95

·       Gregg Popovich NBA San Antonio 12/10/96

·       Lindy Ruff NHL Buffalo 7/21/97

·       Barry Trotz NHL Nashville 8/6/97

·       Andy Reid NFL Philadelphia 1/11/99

·       Mike Scioscia MLB LA Angels 11/17/99

·       Bill Belichick NFL New England 1/27/00

·       Ron Gardenhire MLB Minnesota 1/4/02

·       Marvin Lewis NFL Cincinnati 1/14/03

·       Jack Del Rio NFL Jacksonville 1/17/03

Trotz’ tenure in Nashville is currently the second-longest among NHL coaches:

·       Lindy Ruff NHL Buffalo 7/21/97

·       Barry Trotz NHL Nashville 8/6/97

·       Mike Babcock NHL Detroit 7/14/05

·       Randy Carlyle NHL Anaheim 8/1/05

·       Alain Vigneault NHL Vancouver 6/20/06

·       Claude Julien NHL Boston 6/21/07

·       Bruce Boudreau NHL Washington 11/22/07

·       Ron Wilson NHL Toronto 6/10/08

·       Todd McClellan NHL San Jose 6/12/08

·       Terry Murray NHL Los Angeles 7/17/08

The Devils host the Los Angeles Kings on Thursday night. New Jersey has dropped each of its last three meetings with L.A. dating back to a 5-1 win in Newark back on January 10th, 2009.

New Jersey is 16-11-1 all-time against the Kings at home, 9-15-3 on the road including last season’s lone meeting; a 3-2 L.A. victory in the game Zach Parise left with a torn meniscus, which cost him almost all of the rest of the 2010-11 season.

Schwei’s Plus/Minus:

Plus: Lucky 13. Devils penalty-killing a perfect 13-for-13 through the first two games of the season.

Minus: Blanked. Flyers shut out Devils on opening night, the first time in franchise history New Jersey has been held scoreless in a season opener.


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