Zubrus scores twice to power Devils

Associated Press  |  Last updated October 26, 2011
Dainius Zubrus scored two of New Jersey's three second-period goals and ended the Los Angeles Kings' franchise-record shutout streak after more than 221 minutes during the Devils' 3-0 victory Tuesday night. Johan Hedberg made 31 saves in his 18th career shutout, and Patrik Elias had a goal and an assist as the Devils snapped the Kings' four-game winning streak with their second win over Los Angeles this month. Jonathan Bernier stopped 20 shots while Kings coach Terry Murray gave a night off to Jonathan Quick, who set a club record with three consecutive shutouts last week. The longest stretch of scoreless defense in the Kings' 44-year history ended at 221 minutes, 22 seconds when Zubrus charged the crease and muscled a rebound past Bernier. Petr Sykora had two assists in New Jersey's second stop on a four-game road trip. The Devils beat the Kings for the second time in two weeks, following a 2-1 shootout win in Newark on Oct. 13. Quick earned the NHL's player of the week award while boosting his save percentage to .972 during more than 188 straight minutes of scoreless play. Although New Jersey is the only team to beat Quick this season, coach Terry Murray still gave this start to Bernier, the highly regarded backup who lost his only previous appearance this season. After a scoreless first period, Zubrus got his first goal of the season while scoring no style points. He tracked down a long rebound from Andy Greene and followed the puck into the net, falling headfirst into the crease while barely deflecting it underneath Bernier. Greene then forced a turnover in Los Angeles' end two minutes later, and Sykora made a cross-ice pass to Elias for his fourth goal of the season. Zubrus added his second goal on a stoppable shot with 1:34 left in the period. Hedberg was rarely tested in his fourth consecutive start in place of injured Martin Brodeur. The NHL's career victories leader has been out with an injured right shoulder ever since the Devils beat Los Angeles 12 days earlier, and is unlikely to play on the rest of New Jersey's trip. Los Angeles was off to an outstanding start with 11 points in its first seven games, but scoring might be a problem again this season. The Kings have just three goals in their last three games, and they have scored more than three goals just once this season. NOTES: The crowd at Staples Center booed Devils LW Ilya Kovalchuk every time he touched the puck. Kovalchuk spent most of the 2010 offseason flirting with the Kings as a free agent before agreeing to a huge contract to stay in New Jersey. ... Drew Doughty, the Kings' $56 million defenseman, missed his fourth straight game with an upper-body injury. Doughty has returned to portions of practice. ... Devils LW Eric Boulton missed his second straight game with an injured right hand. ... Former UFC heavyweight champion Bas Rutten attended the game.
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