John Madden's winner trickles by Henrik Lundqvist to seal the Devils' Game 3 victory Sunday night at Madison Square Garden.
newjerseydevils.com (April 13) – Stung in two straight losses on home ice, the Devils returned the favor Sunday night on Broadway.
John Madden scored at 6:01 of overtime to lift the Devils to a 4-3 win over the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden and breathe new life into their best-of-seven series.
Madden's second goal of the series and fourth career playoff winner secured the much-needed victory for the Devils, who avoided an 0-3 deficit and now trail the Rangers two games to one in their Eastern Conference quarterfinal.
His sharp-angle centering feed from the left side of the net pinballed off the right skate of Marc Staal and through the legs of Henrik Lundqvist, silencing the Garden crowd.
"Now it's 2-1 instead of 3-0," head coach Brent Sutter said after his first playoff win. "We still need to take it one game at a time. Tonight was our biggest game of the year to date. We will enjoy it for the next 24 hours and start focusing on our game."
Sutter said the winning goal was a result of a shift in strategy following his team's two straight losses to open the series. The Devils scored just once in each of the games at Prudential Center, losing 4-1 and 2-1.
"It was something we have been thinking about for a couple of days," the coach said. "We wanted to change some things. The players went with it. Part of that responsibility is gone when you get a little power play time. They responded with some goals for us."
The power play that had produced just one goal in nine chances clicked twice on Sunday with Patrik Elias and Zach Parise each converting for their first goals of the series. It marked the first time in 29 games that New Jersey's power play connected twice in one contest (Feb. 9 vs. Carolina).
Sergei Brylin also scored for the Devils, who can tie the series in Wednesday's Game 4 at MSG. The teams return to Newark to battle in Game 5 on Friday at Prudential Center.
Martin Brodeur made 27 saves, including one in overtime, for his 95th career playoff win, and the Devils supported their goalie with their first four-goal output in seven games.
The Devils took a 1-0 lead on Brylin's first of the series.
Mike Rupp started the play by intercepting a Ranger clearing attempt inside the blueline and shooting on Lundqvist, who failed to control the rebound.
Arron Asham followed up with a second shot, and Brylin's rebound swipe carried into Lundqvist's unprotected glove side at 3:01. A video review checked to see if the puck had been kicked in, but showed that it had gone in off the shaft of Brylin's stick.
New York narrowly missed tying the game at 12:20 when Paul Mara's point shot hit the left post and bounced behind Brodeur. Colin White poked the puck to safety, but Jagr found Brandon Dubinsky seconds later for a sharp-angle wrister that beat Brodeur at 12:17.
With the score tied 1-1 after 20 minutes, the Rangers took their first lead of the night on a 5-on-3 power play.
Vitaly Vishnevski was whistled for elbowing Sean Avery in the neutral zone at 5:20, and Bryce Salvador swatted the puck over the glass for a delay of game just 10 seconds into the kill.
New York's second goal began with Scott Gomez gaining the blue line and leaving for Jagr at the top of the right circle. The Rangers' captain passed back to Gomez in the right corner, and the ex-Devil found Avery in front of the net for his third of the series at 6:50.
The Devils used the Rangers' lack of discipline to their advantage to climb back on top. New Jersey had four chances with the man advantage in the second period, and cashed in on Fedor Tyutin's delay of game at 12:45.
Elias gloved down Staal's clearing attempt at the top of the right circle and stepped toward the hash mark to rip his first of the postseason past Lundqvist at 12:56.
Elias, who posted 11 points in the Devils' first-round sweep of the Rangers in 2006, snapped New Jersey's 0-for-11 drought with his third point of the series (1g-2a). His 36 postseason goals are tops all-time in Devils history.
New Jersey notched its second straight power-play goal to break the 2-2 tie.
Parise spun a backhander toward the net that changed direction off of Brendan Shanahan's sliding block attempt. Lundqvist dove across the goal line with his catching glove, but couldn't control as it rolled over him and into the net at 15:19.
Elias took a roughing minor at the end of the second period, setting up a two-minute New York power play to open the third. That led to the only goal of the final frame. Dubinsky got loose in front of Brodeur for a backhand chip at the 55-second mark for his second of the night.
Brodeur had to be sharp in the third and stopped 11 of 12 as the Rangers outshot the Devils 12-5.
Brian Gionta had the first good scoring chance of the overtime, with a 1-on-1 rush down the left side. He cut back on Callahan and put a wrist shot through Lundqvist that hit the right post at 1:58.
The Devils outshot the Rangers 6-1 in the extra session.
NJD NOTES The Devils' last OT winner at MSG was Stephane Richer's Game 1 clincher in the 1994 Eastern Conference finals... Madden's tally was the 20th of his career in the postseason... The Devils played to two overtime contests in last year's playoffs, winning both. Gomez, the ex-Devil, had the winner at Tampa in Game 4 of the '07 Eastern quarterfinals, and Jamie Langenbrunner lifted the Devils in Game 2 of the semifinals against Ottawa... Vishnevski replaced Andy Greene in the lineup on Sunday.
1 - 0 NJD
1 - 1 Tie
2 - 1 NYR
2 - 2 Tie