667: Number of Brodeur
PHILADELPHIA -- Martin Brodeur's win totals will no longer ironically be linked to the number of the beast.
Having been stuck with 666 wins -- ironically at that seeing as Brodeur has a big ole devil on his chest -- Brodeur finally snapped his six-game losing streak to earn his 667th career win against the Flyers in Philadelphia. It was his first win since March 23.
The Devils' 3-0 win also snapped the 10-game losing streak they were on, enabling them to leap-frog the Flyers in the standings.
Brodeur stopped 23 shots for his second shut-out of the season, also against the Flyers (3-0 back on January 22). For his career, Brodeur shut out the Flyers 11 times, and is now 47-30-6-3 against Philadelphia.
"They’re a good team defensively, and their system is good," Claude Giroux said. "Brodeur’s been in the league for a long time, he’s a veteran goalie and he’s a good goalie."
The Devils finally got the game's first goal 5:36 into the second period and it came with the Flyers trapped in the Devils zone.
Matt Read forced a fantastic turnover and had a 2-on-1 breakaway. Read turned his back to Brodeur and waited for help from Wayne Simmonds and Sean Couturier to send the pass to either instead of shooting on Brodeur.
The puck was then turned over and sent the other way where Stephen Gionta sent over a pass to Ryan Carter. Carter fired a hard wrister that beat Ilya Bryzgalov short-side to give New Jersey a 1-0 lead.
It was all Brodeur would need to preserve his second shut-out of the season against the Flyers and break the skid he was on.
The play started because of Read opting to pass rather than shoot, which became a theme during the night.
"When you make mistakes against any team - and the Devils are one of those teams because the play a tight checking game," head coach Peter Laviolette said after the game. "They're very pateint and when something happens they're capable of scoring a goal and playing a 1-0 game to the end."
The Devils added a late goal with under six minutes to play. After another series of scoring chances for the Flyers failed and turned into odd-man rush, Matt D'Agostini scored on a breakaway to beat Bryzgalov glove side and give the Devils a two-goal cushion.
With the Flyers losing and the Rangers winning 6-1 over Florida tonight, New York only needs two more points to officially eliminate the Flyers from the playoffs.
Photos during warm-ups taken by John Russo