- The Devils were outshot 14-2 in the first period, as the Kings dominated the first twenty minutes.
- Despite the large disparity in shots, NJ got on the board first with a Ryan Carter goal 5:52 into the third period.
- The Kings equalized the game quickly, as Justin Williams beat Cory Schneider less than two minutes later to tie the game at 1-1.
- After a frantic 3-on-3 situation after reciprocating minors to Jaromir Jagr and Dustin Brown, the Devils grabbed the second point when Marek Zidlicky found Jaromir Jagr in the slot shortly after he came out of the box to seal the deal.
Ugly is a fitting word to describe the Devils 2-1 win in Los Angeles on Thursday night.
As ugly as it may have been for most of the contest, New Jersey will gladly take the two points they earned against Ben Scrivens and the Kings.
After being outshot 14-2 in the first period, it looked like it might be a long night for the Devils, but Cory Schneider turned in a sensational performance, yielding just one goal on 35 shots by Los Angeles. Schneider lowered his goals against average to 1.87 and his save percentage moves to .925%.
He needed to be that good, as Scrivens, along with the Kings' defense, stymied the Devils until Ryan Carter was able to solve the former Cornell goaltender at the 5:52 mark of the third period. Prior to Carter's goal, the former Toronto Maple Leaf had shut out the Devils for five straight periods.
The rest, as they say, is history. In what might be a precursor of things to come, Jaromir Jagr and Dustin Brown took reciprocating minors in the overtime period, which allowed the teams to skate 3-on-3 for a full two minutes. It has been reported that the NHL is considering changing the overtime format to allow for a 3-on-3 period before the shootout. If that's the case, then it should lead to some fantastic, open-ice hockey, which was certainly on display on Thursday night.
After the teams got back to 4-on-4, it was Marek Zidlicky making yet another big play for this team, as he found Jaromir Jagr, who lit the lamp and etched himself into NHL history once again. With the 690th goal of his career, he ties former teammate Mario Lemieux for 9th all time in NHL history and the game winning tally also tied him for 1st in game winning goals all time at 121. He'll need just one more game-winner to move past the great Gordie Howe for that honor.
There are a lot of positive things to be said about the future hall of fame winger, but Jagr's presence has been felt both on and off the ice. Whether it's getting line mates Travis Zajac and Dainius Zubrus to join his post-practice skating regimen, to scoring big goals at crucial times, the 41-year-old is turning back the clock and has he goes, the Devils seem to follow suit.
As much as it was a struggle against a very physical Kings team, the Devils battled and the result is two more huge road points, giving them four in a span of just over 24 hours.
They'll have a day off on Friday before they head to San Jose for yet another tough matchup against the Sharks.
With two monumental wins under their belt, this will be a confident bunch heading into SAP Center on Saturday.