The Devils' two-time Vezina Trophy winner left with 6:50
remaining, and New Jersey's one-goal deficit turned to three in a
6-3 loss to the defending Stanley Cup champions on Wednesday night.
It wasn't poor goaltending that plagued the Devils, it was their
habit of making mistakes in their own end that led to easy goals.
"We just can't keep turning the puck over and expect to win,"
said coach Larry Robinson after New Jersey allowed the final four
goals. "We're not moving the puck and we're just not putting the
puck in the right place. We had too many turnovers."
Backup goalie Scott Clemmensen replaced Brodeur and surrendered
the final two goals to Andreychuk and Lecavalier -- 56 seconds apart
-- that pushed Tampa Bay's lead to 6-3.
Brodeur's knee injury doesn't appear to be as serious as
initially feared. He will go through a series of precautionary
While facing a barrage of shots, Brodeur caught his right leg on
the post and fell to the ice.
"I was concerned enough to leave the game," Brodeur said.
"The doctor looked at it after the game and he thought it didn't
look too bad, but we'll see what happens.
"My skate got caught and I twisted it. I heard it twist and I
couldn't get up. All my body weight fell on it. I had to be really
hurt to leave the game. We were still in the game at that point."
Andreychuk scored his first goal of the season 5:27 into the
third period, snapping a 3-3 tie. He added a power-play goal with
6:33 remaining while Tampa Bay had a 5-on-3 advantage.
"I've always loved this building and I had a great time when I
was here," Andreychuk said. "I have nothing but respect for this
organization. I still like to score goals, and now we all have to
chip in. I don't think anyone just wants to play defense."
Tampa Bay (5-3-2) then pushed the lead to 2-0 in the closing
minutes of the first period. Fredrik Modin skated past defenseman
Paul Martin and beat Brodeur with a backhand shot. The Lightning
outshot the Devils 16-3 in the opening period.
The Devils (4-5) controlled the second period, tying the game
with goals by defensemen Sean Brown and Vladimir Malakhov. Brown
scored off a good feed from Jamie Langenbrunner, who was set up
behind the net. Brown ripped in a shot from the right corner for
his first goal of the season at 1:57 of the second.
Malakhov scored on a blast from the blue line off work by
Langenbrunner and Brown with just 2:23 left in the period.
However, the Lightning came right back and tied it on Vaclav
Prospal's sixth goal of the season, just 1:08 later -- 17 seconds
into Dan McGillis' hooking penalty.
The third period was played at a blistering pace, with Brodeur
making one diving save after another. Brodeur made 30 saves before
leaving the game.
"It's just a matter of time before he gets hurt, if we keep
giving up chances where he has to stand on his head all the time
like that," Robinson said. "Something's going to happen."
Grahame stopped 20 of 23 shots for his fourth victory of
the season. ... Clemmensen stopped only three shots. ... New Jersey
LW Krzysztof Oliwa cleared waivers and was assigned to Albany of
the AHL. Oliwa hasn't decided whether he will report. ... It was
the second time the Devils allowed a season-high six goals. They
didn't give up that many during the 2003-04 season. ... Lightning
rookie Evegni Artyukhin earned on assist on Andreychuk's first goal
for his first NHL point. ... Richards had three assists, giving him
a team-high eight. ... The Lightning have won five straight from