Saturday, January 05, 2008

Brodeur Stymies Flyers Once Again

by Bob Herpen
The Phanatic Magazine

Martin Brodeur made 36 stops to record his fourth shutout of the season, as New Jersey topped Philadelphia, 3-0, at the Prudential Center.

Patrik Elias picked up a goal and an assist, while Paul Martin and Travis Zajac scored for the Devils, who have won five of six overall and bested the Flyers for the 11th consecutive time at home.

Martin Biron allowed three goals on 26 shots for the Flyers, whose three-game win streak came to an end and who were blanked for just the second time all season.

Philadelphia has not won a regular-season contest in New Jersey since March 9, 2004.

With a three-goal lead, Brodeur remained strong over the final 20 minutes, stopping all 14 shots he faced as the Flyers desperately buzzed around him.

When the buzzer sounded, Brodeur earned his 40th career regular-season win against the Atlantic Division rivals and notched his eighth regular-season shutout over Philly. In addition, the sure-fire Hall-of-Fame goaltender picked up his 96th career shutout.

The Devils took a 1-0 lead midway through the first, as Martin looped from the right side to the left through the crease and lifted a shot into an open net over Biron. Dainius Zubrus set up a screen on the play, causing Biron to fall to the ice prior to the goal.

It was 2-0 with 2:29 left in the period on Zajac's breakaway tally. In a 4-on-4 situation, Flyers defenseman Braydon Coburn fell down just inside his own blue line, leaving the puck for Zajac, who swooped in on the right side and shot the puck off Biron's glove and in.

Elias celebrated his return to the lineup after missing two games with a groin injury, with a power-play goal coming 7:15 before the end of the second period to give the Devils a 3-0 advantage.

Jersey nearly took a four-goal lead with 2:46 left in the second, but John Madden hit the left pipe with his shot all alone from five feet in front. The missed opportunity did not cost the Devils, however.

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