Devils 3, Rangers 1
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) _ Scott Stevens scored the first goal this season by a New Jersey defenseman on a long slap shot late in the second period and the Devils ended the New York Rangers’ six-game unbeaten streak 3-1 on Tuesday night.
The game was somewhat of a homecoming as Devils defenseman Scott Niedermayer played his first game of the year after a contract problem and long-time Devil John MacLean returned in a Rangers’ uniform.
The result wasn’t surprising as the Devils extended their unbeaten streak against New York to 11 games (7-0-4) by becoming the first team in three games to score against Mike Richter. He had come into the game off shutouts against Buffalo and Carolina but he was beaten by Brendan Morrison, Stevens and Jay Pandolfo, who clinched the game with 2:27 to play.
Stevens got the game winner with 1:57 left in the second period on a shot from just inside the blue line that appeared to fool Richter after being deflected by Ulf Samuelsson.
Martin Brodeur, who had 24 saves, made the goal stand up in the third period, stopping two good big slap shots by MacLean and one from the left circle by Kevin Stevens.
Those two had combined on the Rangers’ goal midway through the second period with MacLean, who spent his first 15 seasons with the Devils before being traded last year, doing most of the work.
MacLean took a drop pass from Esa Tikkanen in the left corner, circled until he was 30 feet in front of Brodeur and fired a low shot. Stevens put in the rebound.
Richter came into the game not having allowed a goal in 140 minutes, 57 seconds. The streak lasted another 14:53 before Morrison ended it by putting his own rebound past the goaltender with the Devils on a power play.
Dave Andreychuk got his 600th career assist on the play, the 50th player to reach the milestone.
New Jersey has won five of its last six games.