Devils' Mini Slide Grows To 3 With OT Loss - NBC New York

Devils' Mini Slide Grows To 3 With OT Loss

Elias returns, Parise nets 42nd but NJ loses in Chicago



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    Martin Brodeur can't save them all.

    Not even Martin Brodeur can always stop what he can't see.

    Brent Seabrook beat Brodeur from the blue line at 3:36 of overtime to give the Chicago Blackhawks their third straight victory, 3-2 over the New Jersey Devils on Friday night.

    Seabrook, who also had an assist, scored on a 55-foot drive with New Jersey's Dainius Zubrus and David Johnny Oduya in the path of the shot. The screened drive was set up by Martin Havlat's pass.

    "I don't think he really could see that one," Seabrook said. "It's good for us it went in."

    Brodeur holds the NHL record for career wins by a goalie with 553. He broke the mark with his 552nd victory on March 17 in a 3-2 home win over Chicago.

    Brodeur admitted he didn't pick up Seabrook's drive.

    "I didn't see much," Brodeur said. "I think when Havlat made that pass across, Zubie was in front of me and so was my defenseman (Oduya). It (the shot) went right through them. I saw him (Seabrook) wind up. After that I just saw it when it passed Johnny. It was too late."

    Havlat had a goal, and set up Kris Versteeg's power-play score in regulation and Seabrook's winner. The three points gave Havlat 68, tying his career high set with Ottawa in 2003-04.

    Havlat has a four-game goal streak, with five goals four assists in the span.

    "He has had a remarkable year overall," Chicago coach Joel Quenneville said. "He has a tremendous touch and feel on the ice and scored a timely goal tonight on New Jersey's top line."

    Zach Parise scored his 42nd goal of the season, and Paul Martin also scored for the Devils, 0-2-1 in their last three.

    "I thought we did a lot of good things here tonight, but we also shot ourselves in the foot," New Jersey coach Brent Sutter said. "Look at their last two goals—turnovers where you can't turn pucks over."

    Chicago's Nikolai Khabibulin was sharp in blocking 28 shots. Brodeur made 39 saves, including several close-in stops.

    "We're not playing as well as we want to, but we've got a lot of games left," Brodeur said. "We've got to start building a little and get focused on what we need to do."

    Chicago ended a 12-game winless streak against New Jersey. Since beating the Devils 5-2 at the United Center on Oct. 10, 1998, Chicago had eight regulation losses, two shootout losses and two ties against New Jersey.

    The victory kept Chicago in fourth place in the Western Conference, two points ahead of Vancouver.

    "It was huge," Seabrook said. "We needed these points. Vancouver is looking at it the same way."

    The point moved the Atlantic Division-leading Devils eight points ahead of second-place Philadelphia. New Jersey is four points behind Boston for the top spot in the Eastern Conference.

    Chicago outshot New Jersey 20-14 in the first period, but trailed 2-1 after 20 minutes.

    The Blackhawks had five power plays in the first and dominated early, but Brodeur kept it close with several sharp saves.

    Versteeg's power-play goal opened the scoring 5:51 in. Left untouched at the left edge of the crease, Versteeg took Havlat's pass, spun and fired a shot over Brodeur's glove.

    Parise tied it at 7:23 on a rising shot from the right circle that may have deflected off the stick of Chicago defenseman Aaron Johnson.

    Martin gave the Devils a 2-1 lead with 18 seconds left in period. From a goalmouth scramble, Martin converted a rebound after Khabibulin had made saves on Brian Gionta and Zubrus.

    Havlat tied it at 2 with 5:37 left in the second on a low shot from high in the slot with Chicago's Andrew Ladd parked in front of Brodeur.

    In the final minutes of the second, Khabibulin made a point-blank stop on Bobby Holik and Brodeur stopped Patrick Sharp after he stickhandled around New Jersey defenseman Bryce Salvador.

    Both goalies were alert in the scoreless third. Khabibulin moved quickly to block Travis Zajac's 20-foot wrist shot during a power play midway through the period, then stopped Holik with 5 minutes left.