Arnott nets fluke winner as Devils beat Lightning
NEWARK, N.J. – Jason Arnott scored a lucky go-ahead goal in a five-goal third period and Martin Brodeur made 33 saves to lead the struggling New Jersey Devils to a 6-3 victory over the Tampa Bay Lightning on Sunday night.
David Clarkson scored twice and Dainius Zubrus, Patrik Elias and Nick Palmieri added a late insurance goals as the Devils snapped a four-game losing streak and won for only the third time in 18 games.
The victory marked second time in 27 games this season that New Jersey has overcome a deficit after two periods.
Teddy Purcell, Ryan Malone and Dominic Moore tallied for the Southeast Division leading Lightning, which is 7-3-1 in its last 11 games.
Arnott's game winner came just nine seconds after Steven Stamkos was given a questionable cross-checking penalty. Vladimir Zharkov sent the puck from behind the net to Henrik Tallinder in the left circle. The defenseman wound up and hit a puck that knuckled toward the net where it appeared to hit off Arnott's hand and floated into the net.
The play was reviewed and Arnott's 10th goal of the season stood.
Zubrus pushed the lead to 4-2 and Elias and Palmieri sandwiched empty net goals around a tally by Moore.
Clarkson had tied the game at 2 early in the third period with his seventh goal of the season and second of the game. Ilya Kovalchuk set up the power-play tally with a cross-ice pass from the left point that set up a slapshot that beat Lightning goaltender Dan Ellis.
Malone had given the Lightning a 2-1 lead with 3:59 left in the first period with his ninth goal on the power play. Brodeur seemingly had the corner of the net shut off but Malone's jam-in from a bad angle found its way between the goaltenders pads.
Purcell and Clarkson traded goals in the opening 5:55.
Purcell's career-high seventh goal was a gift. Devils center Adam Mair tried to clear a loose puck in the crease and it hit off Lightning forward Mattias Ritola and bounced to the other side of the net where Purcell had a tap-in.
Clarkson took a great pass from Tim Sestiti and beat Ellis on a breakaway to the tie.
NOTES: Defenseman Anton Volchenkov was scratched from the Devils' lineup because of the death of his father. D Mark Fayne was recalled from Albany (AHL) and played. ...The goal by Palmieri was his first in the NHL.