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Injury-plagued Devils host streaking Lightning

Tampa Bay (4-3-3) at New Jersey (6-3-2), 7:00 pm EST

NEWARK, New Jersey (Ticker) -- The New Jersey Devils are about

to find out what they are made of without their star goaltender.

Hampered by a plethora of injuries, the Devils will try to

figure out a winning formula with Martin Brodeur on the shelf

when they host the Tampa Bay Lightning on Wednesday.

New Jersey was without its 36-year-old future Hall of Famer

during Monday's 2-0 loss to the Buffalo Sabres, but it was not

until the following day the team learned Brodeur will miss at

least three months due to surgery to repair a distal bicep

muscle in his left elbow. The procedure is scheduled for


Brodeur's absence on Monday marked the first time in 57 games

dating to last season he did not start. It also was only the

21st time in his career he did not dress for a game.

Since 1997-98, the 36-year-old Brodeur has played in at least 70

games every season. Last campaign, he appeared in all but five

of the Devils' 82 regular-season games, posting a 44-27-6 record

with a 2.17 goals-against average.

Kevin Weekes was stellar in goal against the Sabres, turning

aside 28 of the 30 shots he faced. However, the Devils did

little to help him - especially in the first period, when they

were whistled for five penalties and outshot, 20-3.

While Brian Rolston, Bobby Holik and defenseman Andy Greene

continued to miss time, New Jersey also was without blue-liner

Paul Martin on Monday due to upper body soreness. His status

for Wednesday is questionable.

Carrying a ton of offensive weight on his shoulders, Zach Parise

had scored in six straight games, but that streak came to an end

as Ryan Miller posted his second straight shutout for Buffalo.

Tampa Bay, which is 2-1-0 away from home this season, opens a

five-game road trip in this one and hopes to extend its winning

streak to four.

The Lightning, who are coming off a 3-2 shootout victory over

the Ottawa Senators, have been propelled by captain Vincent

Lecavalier of late. He netted his sixth goal in Saturday's win

and has five points - three goals and two assists - in his last

three games.



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