Andy Greene scored consecutive goals, the first two-goal game of the defenseman's career, and the surging New Jersey Devils beat the Carolina Hurricanes 4-2 on Wednesday night.
Patrik Elias and Rob Niedermayer also scored for the Devils, who have won four straight and seven of eight. Martin Brodeur made 21 saves but remained tied with Terry Sawchuk for the most shutouts in NHL history at 103.
Greene scored the second and third goals of the game, giving New Jersey (21-7-1) a 3-0 lead before Carolina scored twice in a span of 1:58 to cut it to 3-2 in the second period.
Brandon Sutter, the son of former Devils coach and current Calgary coach Brent Sutter, had the first goal for the Hurricanes (7-18-5). Tuomo Ruutu added a power-play goal.
Elias scored the first goal, giving him 299 for his career, and Niedermayer's empty-netter sealed it with 5 seconds left _ ending Carolina's modest two-game winning streak.
The Devils got a freak goal in the first. Elias took a pass from Niclas Bernfors and skated in on the right side. His attempted backhand pass back to Bernfors was broken up by Carolina defenseman Aaron Ward, but the puck caromed off Ward's skate and into the net.
Elias' fourth goal of the season came at 11:11.
New Jersey increased the lead to 2-0 late in the period when Greene skated into the Carolina zone untouched and unleashed a slap shot from the blue line that eluded goalie Cam Ward, who missed the previous 13 games with a cut on his upper leg that he got from the skate of Columbus' Rick Nash on Nov. 7.
Early in the second Greene scored again, this time on a power play. With Ray Whitney off for high-sticking, Greene skated into the Hurricanes' zone, got knocked down, but was able to get up in time to knock in a rebound of Zach Parise's shot for his fifth goal of the season.
It didn't take long for Carolina to end Brodeur's bid for the record-breaking shutout. Sutter took a shot that skipped and handcuffed Brodeur and found its way into the net just 43 seconds after Greene's second goal.
Ruutu scored less than two minutes later.
The Hurricanes dominated the third period but couldn't score. They had two good shots with two extra men on the ice in the closing minute, but Niedermayer put the game away for New Jersey.
NOTES: Devils D Mike Mottau returned to the lineup after missing Monday's game with food poisoning. ... Cam Ward dropped to 2-10-3 this season. ... Brodeur is 28-12-3 against Carolina. He needs three more appearances to tie Patrick Roy for most games played by a goalie in NHL history (1,029).
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