Jamie Langenbrunner broke a scoreless tie midway through the second period and Jay Pandolfo added a short-handed goal with 3:36 left to lead the Devils to their fourth straight win and 15th in 20 games.
The Devils moved to within four points of the Buffalo Sabres for the best record in the Eastern Conference. New Jersey has played one fewer game.
Brodeur, who benefited from a shot off the post by Jason Blake in the second period, had to work hard late to preserve his 90th career regular-season shutout. He made a great glove save on Brendan Witt’s slap shot with about six minutes to play, before stopping Tom Poti, Blake and Mike Sillinger during the power play on which Pandolfo scored.
The loss overshadowed an outstanding 35-save performance by Islanders goalie Rick DiPietro, who posted his 11th NHL shutout Wednesday. It also marked the first time in nine games that New York failed to earn a point (5-1-3).
Brodeur has 90 career shutouts, four behind George Hainesworth for second in NHL history. Terry Sawchuk has the record with 103.
Langenbrunner started and ended the play on the Devils’ first goal. He sent a back pass from along the boards in the Devils zone to Paul Martin. The defenceman made a quick cross-ice pass that sent Zach Parise and Travis Zajac on a break.
Islanders defenceman Bruno Gervais prevented Parise from getting a good shot, but DiPietro seemed to lose his footing. Langenbrunner swatted the loose puck past him on the second try.
The goal came a little less than three minutes after Blake clanged a shot from the circle off the right post.
Pandolfo’s goal iced the game.
DiPietro kept the Islanders in it in the first period when New Jersey took advantage of four power plays, including an early two-man advantage, for a 15-3 edge in shots.
Brian Gionta had five shots in the period, three from point-blank range.
New York didn’t get record a shot until Randy Robitaille and Blake had chances with a little more than six minutes left in the period.
Notes: Linesman Jay Sharrers and Jonny Murray also worked the Devils’ game on Tuesday against the Rangers. . . . New Jersey has a 4-1 lead in the eight-game season series. . . . Islanders C Alexei Yashin missed his fifth straight game with a knee injury. . . . Devils D David Hale returned to lineup after missing one game with the flu.