Toronto, ON (Sports Network) – David Clarkson scored 2:40 into overtime as New Jersey took a 3-2 win over Toronto at Air Canada Centre.
A flubbed shot in the New Jersey end resulted in Dainius Zubrus grabbing the puck and skating the other way. Entering the Toronto side from the right wing, he stopped along the mid-boards and spun around before firing a pass over to the left circle for Clarkson, who one-timed it home for the win.
“It’s a good feeling to win up here,” said Clarkson, who grew up in Toronto. “I cheered for the Leafs as a kid and admired players who played for the team. So to get an opportunity to score a goal like that felt pretty good.”
Clarkson also scored in regulation while Ilya Kovalchuk also tallied for the Devils, who snapped a four-game losing streak. Martin Brodeur made 29 saves in the win.
Phil Kessel and Matt Frattin each had a goal for the Maple Leafs, who have dropped three of four. James Reimer stopped 23 shots in the loss.
“We came out flat-footed tonight and weren’t playing our game,” said Frattin. “We got our legs under ourselves later in the game, but it wasn’t enough to get the win.”
The Devils scored a pair of power-play goals in the first period for a 2-0 lead.
The first came 5:03 in when Petr Sykora passed the puck from the top of the right circle to the top of the left where Kovalchuk’s one-timer found the back of the net.
A bit less than four minutes later, Zach Parise sent a quick pass from the low right side to the front where Clarkson was all alone for the easy tip.
The Leafs got one back at the 11:29 mark of the second as Joffrey Lupul threw a backhand shot on net from a sharp angle at the left side that saw the rebound hit off the skate of Kessel and go in.
Frattin did most of the work on his third goal of the season as he chipped it into the zone himself, fought off his checker to get behind the defense and slipped it past Brodeur on the far side to tie the game 1:56 into the third.