EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) _ Jacques Lemaire, who led the New Jersey Devils to a Stanley Cup in 1995, resigned as coach Friday after the team's second straight poor performance in the playoffs.

``I think it's the right move for the club and for myself,'' said Lemaire, whose eyes watered as he discussed his five seasons in New Jersey.

There's been speculation about Lemaire's future since the Devils were eliminated in the first round of the playoffs last week by the eighth-seeded Ottawa Senators.

New Jersey had posted the best regular-season record in the Eastern Conference. The top seeds, New Jersey and Dallas, were considered favorites in their conferences.