Newark, NJ (Sports Network) – Brent Johnson stopped 30 shots as the Pittsburgh Penguins took a 3-1 win over the New Jersey Devils at Prudential Center.
Paul Martin, who played with the Devils for the previous six seasons prior to signing with Pittsburgh in the offseason, had a goal and an assist while Alex Goligoski and Matt Letestu each lit the lamp for the Penguins, who had dropped a pair of 3-2 decisions to Philadelphia and Montreal in their first two games of the season at their new home, the Consol Energy Arena.
Patrik Elias scored the lone goal while Martin Brodeur gave up two goals on 30 shots for the Devils, who have lost all three of their games thus far this season.
The Penguins struck with 1:04 left in the first period. Ilya Kovalchuk was tangled up with a Penguin in the neutral zone and Goligoski poked the puck away. From the top of the left circle, Goligoski cranked a slap shot that tipped off the glove of Brodeur and went into the net for a 1-0 lead.
Skating on the power play just 2:32 into the second, Pittsburgh took a 2-0 lead. Holding the puck at the left point, Kris Letang uncorked a shot that hit off of Letestu then a Devil before going into the net.
Johnson made eight saves in each of the first two periods to keep the Devils off the board.
New Jersey cut its deficit in half 8:20 into the third when Jason Arnott won a left circle faceoff straight back to Elias, who one-timed it over the glove of Johnson.
The Devils got Brodeur out of the net later for the extra attacker, but Martin put the puck into the empty net to seal the win.
New Jersey plays in Buffalo on Wednesday…Pittsburgh hosts Toronto on Wednesday…New Jersey swept the series last season, outscoring the Penguins, 22-5…Devils forward Pierre-Luc Letourneau-Leblond was out of the lineup as he received an automatic one-game suspension for taking an instigator penalty in the final five minutes of Saturday’s 7-2 loss to Washington…Pittsburgh went 1-for-6 on the power play while New Jersey was 0-for-2.