Jamie Langenbrunner and the New Jersey Devils keep finding ways to win despite an injury list that grows longer every day.
Langenbrunner and Zach Parise each had a goal and an assist, and Martin Brodeur made 31 saves as the Devils extended their winning streak to six games with a 3-1 victory over the Anaheim Ducks on Wednesday night.
Brian Rolston was the latest casualty, missing the game with an undisclosed injury or illness. He joined Rob Niedermayer (upper body), Johnny Oduya (lower body), Paul Martin (broken forearm), Jay Pandolfo (shoulder) and Dean McAmmond (undisclosed illness) on the sidelines.
Playing with a lineup sprinkled with callups from their AHL Lowell, the Devils have not missed a beat.
“I guess we’re getting used to it,” Langenbrunner said. “We’re not the only team in the league that has to deal with it. The number of guys we have out is probably more than most. The guys who have stepped in have stepped up and played well. It’s been good to see, and hopefully it will continue.”
David Clarkson also scored, and Andy Greene had two assists for the Devils, winners of three straight at home after dropping their first three there.
Corey Perry scored for the Ducks and Jonas Hiller made 22 saves.
New Jersey will travel to Pittsburgh on Thursday night looking to go 9-0 on the road. The NHL record to start a season away from home is 10-0, set by Buffalo in 2006.
Langenbrunner got the Devils going 38 seconds in, netting their fastest goal from the start of a game this season. Parise tipped the puck back to Greene at the point who flipped a shot on net that Langenbrunner deflected past Hiller.
“The way we play, it’s definitely helpful if we can score first,” Langenbrunner said. “It allows us to settle in and be more comfortable in our style.”
Anaheim’s top line tied it at 1 as Perry scored his team-leading 12th goal 2:25 into the second. Bobby Ryan circled behind the Devils’ net, trying for a wraparound stuff. Brodeur blocked the bid but couldn’t control the puck. Ryan Getzlaf took a swipe before the puck squirted across the crease to Perry for the tap-in at the right side of the net.
Perry and Getzlaf both extended their scoring streaks to nine games.
Clarkson put the Devils up 2-1 at 12:52, eluding Anaheim defenceman James Wisniewski with a nifty deke before drilling a shot past Hiller from the slot.
Considered an up-and-down grinder, Clarkson was happy to add some flash to his game.
“It felt good to try something like that and get away with it,” Clarkson said. “I’m known to be a crash and banger, so to add a little bit of that stuff was definitely exciting.”
New Jersey finished the period with a 3-1 lead as Parise, sprung by a pass from Langenbrunner, put in his own rebound on a short-handed breakaway with 12.7 seconds left.
Down by two in the third, Anaheim tried to claw back. Brodeur made a glove stop on Teemu Selanne’s drive from the left circle about 7 minutes in, and shortly thereafter the Ducks got their fifth power play.
They failed to generate strong pressure with the man advantage, and the Devils did a good job of limiting the Ducks’ chances until Anaheim went on the power play with 3:44 left. Brodeur denied Getzlaf’s one-timer, and the Ducks were done.
“We didn’t win any of those loose-puck battles on the power play,” Ducks coach Randy Carlyle said after his team went 0 for 6 with the advantage. “We didn’t create much until the last one when we started to shoot the puck more. When you’ve got an opportunity, you’ve got to take the most of it. Giving up the short-handed goal took a lot of momentum away from us.”
NOTES: The Devils recalled D Matt Corrente from Lowell. He didn’t play. … Langenbrunner played in his 900th NHL game. … The Devils last won six straight Jan. 13-30. … Ducks G Jean-Sebastien Giguere dressed for the first time since sustaining a groin strain on Oct. 24. He backed up Hiller. … Ducks C Saku Koivu missed the game with a lower-body injury … The Ducks kicked off a four-game road trip that will take them to Columbus, Detroit and Pittsburgh. … Before the game, the Devils honoured their 2003 Stanley Cup championship team that beat the Ducks in seven games in the finals.