VANCOUVER, British Columbia (CBSNewYork/AP) — Cory Schneider wasn’t worried about beating his former team. All the goalie cared about was helping the New Jersey Devils end their road trip on a positive note.
Schneider stopped 36 shots and Mike Cammalleri added a goal and two assists Sunday as the Devils beat the Vancouver Canucks 3-2 to snap a two-game slide.
Drafted by Vancouver back in 2004, Schneider spent three seasons with the Canucks before getting traded to New Jersey at the 2013 draft as part of the goaltending soap opera that would also eventually see Roberto Luongo dealt by Vancouver.
“As a group we needed two points,” Schneider said. “It’s a building I played in a lot and got very comfortable in and tonight was one of those nights I felt good about my game.”
The 29-year-old was 0-1-1 in his first two starts at Rogers Arena with the Devils, who were coming off losses at Edmonton and Calgary.
Cammalleri said he got a first-hand look at what Schneider meant to fans in Vancouver when they went for lunch during the weekend.
“We were calling him the mayor because he was getting cat calls from the whole city everywhere we went,” Cammalleri said. “It seems like he was quite appreciated.”
Andy Greene and Adam Henrique also scored for New Jersey.
Henrik Sedin and Radim Vrbata, with less than a second left in the third period, replied for Vancouver, while Jacob Markstrom made 19 stops in his first home start of the season as the Canucks rested No. 1 goalie Ryan Miller.
Vancouver was unable to build off a 6-3 victory against Chicago on Saturday to get back in the win column following a dismal 1-4-2 road trip that included a 4-3 overtime loss at New Jersey.
The Canucks directed 19 shots at Schneider in the third, but finished a disappointing 1 for 7 on the power play on the night.
“Our power play could have gotten us back in the game,” said Sedin. “We had a lot of chances, just couldn’t score. It’s something we have to look at again.”
New Jersey opened the scoring 65 seconds into the second when Cammalleri outwaited Markstrom in front to slide home his seventh of the season.
Vancouver had a couple of good chances to tie the score as the period wore on, but Schneider stopped Daniel Sedin twice on a Vancouver power play before making a nice blocker save off Vrbata.
New Jersey then made it 2-0 at 1:31 of the third when Greene’s shot from the point on a man advantage caught Markstrom out of position.
“Team-wise I thought we played a pretty good game,” Markstrom said. “It comes down to timely saves and timely goals. Schneider made some great saves in the third and I let in some goals when I need to step up and make a save.
“That doesn’t feel too good right now.”
The Canucks had a golden opportunity with about five minutes gone in the third after New Jersey defenseman John Moore closed his hand on the puck in the crease, but Schneider stretched to stop Vrbata’s ensuing penalty shot.
Henrik Sedin, who recorded the first five-point game of his career on Saturday, gave Vancouver some life with a short-handed goal for his seventh at 7:31 off a turnover by Schneider, but Henrique put any thoughts of a comeback to bed just 2:04 later when he snapped his ninth past Markstrom.
“It felt like the game could have turned around, but when they come back and score the third one right away it takes a lot of wind out of us,” Sedin said. “That was too bad.”
Vrbata scored a consolation goal on the power play with under a second to go in regulation.
“It’s really disappointing,” Sedin said. “It was a chance for us to get moving up in the standings and start feeling good about ourselves and get some wins and get some momentum. That didn’t happen.
“I thought we played good enough to win, but it doesn’t count.”
NOTES: Vrbata returned to the Vancouver lineup after missing two games with an undisclosed injury. … The Devils host Columbus on Wednesday. … The Canucks open a four-game road trip on Wednesday night in Minnesota before travelling to Dallas, Anaheim and Los Angeles.
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