By Joe Rizzo
PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer
NEWARK, New Jersey (Ticker) — Jamie Langenbrunner and Brian
Rolston are a couple of New Jersey big shots.
The captain tied it with a blast late in regulation and Rolston
scored on a bomb 1:43 into overtime Sunday as the New Jersey
Devils erased a trio of deficits en route to a 4-3 victory over
the Ottawa Senators.
Both goals came on the power play for the Devils, who also got
two tallies from Dainius Zubrus and two assists apiece from
Patrik Elias, Brian Gionta and defenseman Johnny Oduya in their
fourth win in five games.
Chris Kelly, defenseman Brendan Bell and Nick Foligno scored for
the Senators, who lost for the 14th time in their last 15 road
games, but at least earned a point out of their Saturday-Sunday
road trip to Toronto and New Jersey.
The Devils use Langenbrunner and Rolston as point men on their
power-play unit because of their very hard and accurate slap
shots. It paid dividends in helping them steal a win against
Rolston unleashed a high slapper from the above the slot that
went through the screen of Senators defenseman Brian Lee, hit
netminder Alex Auld and then went under his arm pit and into the
“It was a 4-on-3 situation, I just pulled it to the middle and I
had a good screen in front and got a good shot off on it,” said
Rolston, who has six goals in 20 games this season, battling an
ankle injury. “It wasn’t anything too complicated.”
“I definitely saw the release and he’s got a big-time shot up
there,” Auld said. “I got a piece, but it wasn’t enough.”
Langenbrunner netted his seventh goal with 3:40 left when he
released a heavy slapper from the top of the right circle that
beat Auld to the far side, making it 3-3. Oduya stole the puck
on a change in the neutral zone to set it up.
“We weren’t sharp early but we found a way,” Langenbrunner said.
“We wanted to get shots. The way they kill (penalties), they
put pressure down low a lot. Mine was more of a transition play
than a set power play. I think our power play is definitely at
its best when we’re shooting the puck and retrieving it and
working off of that.”
“All of a sudden in the last couple, we had a change on the
power play and it was able to win us a hockey game,” Devils
coach Brent Sutter said. “It got us two goals.”
Zubrus has 10 goals in 38 games this season but six tallies have
come in two games. He scored four times in a win November 23 at
Tampa Bay and had gone 11 straight since finding the net in
back-to-back contests before Sunday.
“Honestly, I don’t know why they come more in bunches,” Zubrus
said. “Good thing they’re coming, anyway. It’s been a while.
I’ve had some chances to score.”
He made it 2-2 at 11:15 of the second period when he re-directed
the puck into the net from the top of the crease after a crisp
right-wing pass from Elias.
Zubrus, given Saturday’s practice off to rest what he and Sutter
termed “bumps and bruises”, erased the Devils’ initial deficit
with 41 seconds left in the first period when he scored from in
front of the net off the rebound of Gionta’s shot from the left
Kelly gave the Senators their third and final lead with 12:46
left in regulation after Jesse Winchester and Antoine Vermette
cycled the puck along the end boards.
“Good teams find ways to get those points,” Kelly said. “I
thought we played a great game tonight. We put ourselves in a
terrific situation to get the two points. Unfortunately, we
didn’t, but we’ll take the one point.”
Zubrus was penalized for hooking 15 seconds into the game and
Foligno made New Jersey pay five seconds before the penalty
elapsed when he put a shot from close range between the pad of
Scott Clemmensen and the goalpost.
Foligno, who has six goals this season, was playing his second
game since the death of his grandfather.
Bell converted on the power play 3:50 into the second period to
give the Senators a 2-1 lead, putting the puck into the open
right side of the net after Jason Spezza’s sharp-angle shot from
the left side ricocheted through the crease.