Final

Series (Game 1 of 4)

Series tied 2-2

Game 1: Saturday, December 9th
Devils5Final
Bruins1
Game 2: Thursday, December 14th
Devils3Final
Bruins5
Game 3: Sunday, March 4th
Bruins4Final
Devils1
Game 4: Sunday, April 1st
Bruins1Final
Devils3

Devils 5

(17-9-2, 36 pts)

Bruins 1

(14-11-2, 30 pts)

7:00 PM ET, December 9, 2006

TD Garden, Boston, Massachusetts

1 2 3 T
NJ 2 0 35
BOS 0 1 01

P. Elias (Devils - LW): Goals: 1, Assists: 1

J. Langenbrunner (Devils - RW): Goals: 1, Assists: 0

J. Pandolfo (Devils - LW): Goals: 1, Assists: 1

Devils dominate Bruins to earn fifth straight win

BOSTON (AP) -- The New Jersey Devils' winning formula remains the same: play good defense and then count on Martin Brodeur to make the saves.

Jay Pandolfo and Jamie Langenbrunner scored first-period goals, and Brodeur stopped 19 shots to lead the Devils to their season-high, fifth straight win, a 5-1 victory over the Boston Bruins on Saturday night.

The Devils' winning streak came after a season-high, four-game losing streak. They led 2-0 after one period and that was all they needed.

"It's not rocket science. It's smart hockey. It's Devils' hockey, I guess," New Jersey defenseman Colin White said. "With Marty back there, we rely on him most of the year."

New Jersey, which has played inconsistently on the road while going nearly unbeaten at home (11-1-1), had lost four of five away from Continental Airlines Arena. The Devils improved to 6-8-1 on the road.

The Devils increased their record to 14-2-1 when scoring first. A one-goal deficit had been tough enough for most opponents. But with Brodeur, two was more than the surging Bruins could overcome.

"They're a tough team to come back against, I know that," Boston coach Dave Lewis said. "You've got to get a lot of quality chances to get it past Marty Brodeur, especially with the way they play with their system and discipline."

Eric Rasmussen, Patrik Elias and Sergei Brylin scored third-period goals for the Devils after the Bruins cut their deficit to 2-1.

"If we can get a lead and we have (Marty) back there, we know we have a chance," Devils right wing Brian Gionta said.

Marc Savard scored the goal for Boston, which lost for just the fourth time in 14 games.

Boston goaltender Tim Thomas, playing in his 21st straight game, was lifted at the start of the second period in favor of Hannu Toivonen.

The Devils outshot the Bruins 42-20.

"They've been playing (that way) a long time," Boston defenseman Paul Mara said. "That's why they've won Stanley Cups."

New Jersey jumped ahead 1-0 on Pandolfo's goal 11:19 in. Pandolfo took a centering pass from Brylin and one-timed a shot that appeared to knuckle past Thomas' stick side.

The Devils, who outshot and outplayed the Bruins for most of the opening period, made it 2-0 when Langenbrunner fired a rising wrist shot under the crossbar at 18:47. They finished with a 14-7 shots advantage in the frame.

The Bruins picked up the pace in the second, closing the gap to 2-1 on Savard's goal three minutes in. With Boston skating with an extra attacker during a delayed penalty against New Jersey, Savard scored off the rebound of Milan Jurcina's shot from the point, slipping a shot past Brodeur from the right side of the crease.

Rasmussen scored on a seemingly harmless backhander while skating in along the right wing, sliding a shot along the ice inside the far post with 9:50 to play in the third. Elias' power-play goal made it 4-1 with 5:59 to go.

Toivonen, who stopped 25 shots, made a splendid right-pad stop to rob Elias at the end of a 2-on-1 break late in the second.

Game notes


Bruins LW P.J. Axelsson missed his fourth straight game with a foot injury. ... Red Sox catcher Jason Varitek attended the game. ... It was the first of four meetings between the teams. ... Brodeur faced just 14 shots in the first two periods and Toivonen saw 14 in the second alone. ... New Jersey had a two-man power play for 59 seconds in the middle frame.

Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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