Last season, Florida Panthers goalie Scott Clemmensen won 25 games with the New Jersey Devils while filling in for a then-injured Martin Brodeur.
Clemmensen, facing his former team, stopped 42 shots to lead the Panthers over the Devils, 3-2, at the BankAtlantic Center.
Clemmensen, who signed a three-year contract with Florida in July, faced his former team for the second time this season. He won his first start, stopping 26 shots in a 4-2 win on December 26.
Patrik Elias opened the scoring 59 seconds into the second period. Clemmensen stopped the initial shot, and a rebound chance went off the crossbar. Elias tipped the loose puck past Clemmensen for his 17th goal of the season.
Michael Frolik tied the game at 6:03 of the period. Frolik received a cross-ice pass from Nathan Horton and put a shot on net. The puck deflected off the stick of Rob Niedermayer and beat Brodeur for the tying goal.
Frolik’s goal ended the Devils’ shutout streak of 151 minutes and 29 seconds, which is the third longest in franchise history.
Radek Dvorak put the Panthers ahead, 2-1, 1:14 into the third period. Rostislav Olesz fed Dvorak with a backhanded pass from below the goal line. Dvorak put the shot past Brodeur’s pads for his 14th goal of the season.
Horton stretched the Panthers lead to 3-1 at 12:23 of the period. The center beat Brodeur with a shot from the left circle for his 19th goal of the lead.
Brodeur finished with 15 saves in the loss.
Mike Mottau brought the Devils to within one at 14:46 of the period. But it would be too litte, too late, as the Devils couldn’t get the tying goal.
With the win, the Devils fell back into a tie with the Pittsburgh Penguins for the Atlantic Division lead. Both teams have identical 46-27-7 records, and each team has 99 points. The Devils still hold first place because of their season sweep of the Penguins.
David Clarkson and Nick Tarnasky dropped the gloves at 2:07 in the third period. Clarkson landed more punches, but both players had trouble keeping their balance…Devils’ defenseman Colin White caught an edge and went hard into the boards at 17:52 of the second period. White got up slowly and skated off the ice, but was fine after the game…Devils’ coach Jacques Lemaire, who wants to try and rest some of his regular players, made defenseman Andy Greene a healthy scratch tonight.
Photo Credit: Wilfredo Lee/AP Photo