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Devils beat Canadiens, clinch playoff berth

MONTREAL (AP) — Patrik Elias and Jamie Langenbrunner had power-play goals and Dainius Zubrus also scored for the New Jersey Devils, who clinched their 13th straight playoff berth with a 4-2 win over the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday night.

Martin Brodeur made 25 saves for his 41st victory of the season and New Jersey's 44th.

Brian Rolston recorded his 700th career point when he scored into an empty net at 19:50.

The Devils, who have won four straight in Montreal, moved into a tie with Pittsburgh for first place in the Atlantic Division with 93 points.

New Jersey, which snapped a four-game losing streak on the road, holds the edge for second place overall in the Eastern Conference with one more win than the Penguins. The Devils have eight games remaining, including Sunday in Philadelphia. Pittsburgh has seven games left.

Andrei Kostitsyn had a goal and an assist, and Tomas Plekanec also scored for the Canadiens, who are sixth in the East with 82 points — two ahead of Philadelphia and Boston.

Jaroslav Halak stopped 22 shots. Mike Cammalleri had two assists for his first points in three games since returning from a broken leg that sidelined him for 17 games.

Elias scored his 15th goal during New Jersey's 4-on-3 advantage 8:11 in for the only goal of the opening period. Travis Zajac assisted on the goal for his 200th NHL point.

Langenbrunner gave the Devils a 2-0 lead with another power-play goal 1:59 into the second. The New Jersey captain spun around to get to the puck after Ilya Kovalchuk's point shot failed to get through and drove a slap shot past Halak from the slot.

Former Devils center Scott Gomez earned his 43rd assist as he helped draw Montreal within 2-1 when he fed the puck to Kostitsyn, who snapped a shot past Brodeur for his 15th goal.

Zubrus, who played for Montreal from 1999-2001, restored New Jersey's two-goal advantage at 15:19 when he deflected in Paul Martin's shot for his eighth goal.

Kostitsyn helped get the Canadiens back within one 1:30 later when he banked a centering pass in off Plekanec's right skate.

NOTES: Brodeur has 38 wins, 16 losses and five ties against the Canadiens. ... Devils LW Andrew Peters didn't make the trip. Peters had his eye scratched during a fight with New York Rangers enforcer Jody Shelley on Thursday. ... D Anssi Salmela, D Mark Fraser, LW Jay Pandolfo and LW Pierre-Luc Letourneau-Leblond were healthy scratches for New Jersey. ... Montreal C Glen Metropolit left the game midway through the first. He sustained an upper body injury on his second shift and didn't return.