Jiri Tlusty had two goals, and the surging Carolina Hurricanes built an early lead and carried it through to a 6-3 victory over the slumping New Jersey Devils on Saturday night.
Alexander Semin and Jay Harrison scored 28 seconds apart in the first period, and Jeff Skinner and Chris Terry — in his NHL debut — added goals for the Hurricanes, who won for the fifth time in six games. Dan Ellis made 31 saves in the victory.
Tlusty's second goal was into an empty net with 1:14 remaining.
New Jersey got two goals from Ilya Kovalchuk, including a short-handed tally, and one from Patrik Elias but that wasn't enough for the Devils to avoid their seventh loss in eight games without top goalie Martin Brodeur.
Johan Hedberg stopped only 13 of 18 Carolina shots through two periods and was replaced by Jeff Frazee to start the third.