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Devils' Clarkson earns redemption with Henrique assist

New Jersey Devils forward David Clarkson feared he was about to live up to the team moniker on Wednesday before a moment of redemption helped keep the Stanley Cup Finals alive.

Clarkson went from devil to part angel late in the match as he first hindered then helped New Jersey, who were trailing 3-0 in the best-of-seven series, on their way to a 3-1 road win over the Los Angeles Kings.

When team mate Patrick Elias gave the Devils their first goal and first lead of the series at 7:56 in the third period, it appeared something was finally going the way of the visitors.

But they held the lead for all of 62 seconds as Clarkson was penalized for boarding and Drew Doughty hammered home a goal early in the power play to tie the scores up at 1-1.

Clarkson's head dropped briefly but the 28-year-old Canadian pushed hard to atone and his debt was expunged when he provided an assist to rookie Adam Henrique with 4:31 remaining in the final period.

"When I was sitting in the box it was a pretty bad feeling to see the goal go in," he said. "But to go back out there and see Henrique make that move he made and put it in, it was the best feeling in the world to get the lead back again.

"I didn't even know it was a penalty and, at the end of the day, the refs were pretty good but I'd be lying if I didn't say when I gave the puck to Henrique and he put it in, it was probably the best feeling I've had in my whole career.

"It was exciting and a heck of a shot by Henrique."

Clarkson said despite his initial concern he always had faith his team mates would come up with the necessary plays to keep the series alive.

And sure enough the Devils silenced the Kings record crowd of 18,867 late in proceedings and now return home for the must win Game Five on Saturday.

"It's great to have guys ready to back you up if things go a bit wrong," Clarkson said.

"We showed a lot of heart. We showed it's not over.

"It's tough when you get a 1-1 game like that going into the last couple of minutes, but we did a great job of not giving up and getting pucks on net and that's the reason we won tonight.

"We are a hard working team and we play with our heart every night and this thing's not over yet."

(Editing by Nick Mulvenney)