Posted April 02, 2012 on AP on Fox

NEWARK, NJ - OCTOBER 01: Zach Parise and Ilya Kovalchuk of the New Jersey Devils celebrate Parise's goal at 14:14 of the first period against the New York Islanders at the Prudential Center on October 1, 2010 in Newark, New Jersey. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
The New Jersey Devils are returning to the playoffs, and they're playing like they could do some damage once the postseason begins. Ilya Kovalchuk will try to lead the Devils to a fourth straight win Tuesday night when they host the last-place New York Islanders. New Jersey (45-28-6) failed to reach the postseason last year, ending a franchise-record streak of 13 consecutive seasons in the playoffs. On Saturday, Kovalchuk and the Devils officially avoided a similar fate in 2011-12, as the All-Star left wing got three points in a 5-0 thumping of Carolina to clinch a playoff spot with a third straight win. "It's step one," first-year coach Peter DeBoer said. "Now that we're in, you obviously want to make some noise. That's where we go from here." Seeding is still undecided as New Jersey is sixth in the Eastern Conference, four points ahead of seventh-place Ottawa with three games remaining. The sixth seed would give the Devils a first-round matchup with the Southeast Division win...
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