Keith Kincaid finished with 35 saves and won for the sixth time in his last eight starts to lift the New Jersey Devils to a surprising win over the Eastern Conference-leading Tampa Bay Lightning, 2-1, on Saturday night at Prudential Center in Newark, NJ.
The Devils won their second straight and for the fifth time in seven games. Nico Hischier beat Lightning goalie Alexei Vasilevskiy for his 18th goal of the season at the 17:15 mark of the first period to give the Devils the early advantage.
The Devils (39-28-8) remained on the attack during a relentless second period, attempting 13 shots to Tampa Bay’s 10 and adding their second goal, Kyle Palmieri’s 21st of the season off assists from Pavel Zacha and Taylor Hall at 10:59.
Tampa’s Ondrej Palat scored his ninth goal of the season at the 4:22 mark of the third period off assists from Mikhail Sergachev and Brayden Point.
The Lightning (51-20-4) had their three-game winning streak snapped and lost for just the fourth time in 16 games. Vasilevskiy had 29 saves but lost for the third time in five games after starting the season 40-11-3.
Tampa Bay dominated the game aside from the final score, winning the faceoff battle, 36-26, and in total shots, 36-31. The Lightning also had just four giveaways compared to nine for the Devils.
New Jersey did win the physical battle, leading in hits (27-16) and penalty minutes (6-4).
Hischier was on the attack the entire game, finishing with four shots on goal in just 15:09 of ice time.
Point and Tyler Johnson both had five shots on goal for the Lightning, and Nikita Kucherov had three.
Tampa Bay returns from its two-game road trip to host the Arizona Coyotes on Monday before heading back on the road for two at Boston and the New York Rangers.
New Jersey continues with the second game of its current four-game homestand on Tuesday against Carolina.
—Field Level Media