Game 4 preview: Devils at Rangers
Wednesday, 04.16.2008 / 7:00 PM
New Jersey Devils
newjerseydevils.com – So much for home ice advantage.
It's what teams fight for heading into the Stanley Cup playoffs, hoping that games on their own rink and in front of their home crowd will bring a leg up on the competition.
But that hasn't been the case thus far between the Devils and the New York Rangers.
The first three games of the Devils' opening-round matchup with their cross-river rivals has seen the road team go a perfect 3-0, following New Jersey's 4-3 overtime win on Sunday.
The Devils hope to continue that trend in Game 4 of their Eastern Conference quarterfinal tonight at Madison Square Garden (7 p.m., MSG+, WWDJ 970 AM).
Patrik Elias and Zach Parise each scored power-play goals in the second period Sunday, before John Madden won the game six minutes into the extra session. Madden's tally was the first postseason overtime goal scored by a Devil at MSG since Stephane Richer's Game 1 clincher in the 1994 Eastern Conference finals.
Now the Devils try to take their second straight victory on Broadway and pull even in the series at two games apiece.
"Anything can change momentum," Madden said. "You have to find ways to win games. In some games it might be the penalty killing that's doing it for you, in other games it might be your power play is scoring or your goalie is playing well. That's what it takes to win in this league, especially in a series."
The Devils used a 2-for-8 power play to score more than two regulation goals on Henrik Lundqvist for the first time in 17 games since New Jersey's first-round sweep of New York in 2006.
"For us to get back in the series and for them not to let go of control of the series, there's a lot at stake," said Devils goaltender Martin Brodeur. "That fear of having our backs against the wall has to be there. We did win one game, we did score four goals, the power play did well. But this is the playoffs, you can't ride it too high, you
can't ride it too low."
Brodeur, last year's Vezina Trophy winner, has yet to put his stamp on the series. The three-time Stanley Cup champion has allowed a pair of three-goal games for a 2.62 goals-against average and .908 save percentage in three starts.
Lundqvist, by comparison, has twice limited the Devils to one goal and has a fourth-best 1.94 goals-against average this postseason. But if the Devils can continue to score as they did in Game 3, the series could be all even heading into Friday's Game 5 at Prudential Center.
"We did a great job when we were down 2-0 to play a great game and give ourselves a chance to get back in the series," Brodeur said. "We have to have the same attitude going forward."
with wire services