Taylor Hall scored just 27 seconds into overtime to give the New Jersey Devils a critical 4-3 victory over the host Pittsburgh Penguins on Friday night at PPG Paints Arena.
Hall finished with a goal and two assists. The game ended a six-game road trip for the Devils, who went 4-2-0 over that stretch.
Pittsburgh is battling the Columbus Blue Jackets and Philadelphia Flyers for the second spot in the Metropolitan Division behind the Washington Capitals. The Devils trail all of those teams in the division but are currently holding the last Eastern Conference wild-card position.
Sidney Crosby led the Penguins with a goal and an assist.
Rookie defenseman Will Butcher, Blake Coleman and Nico Hischier scored within a span of 3:39 in the second period to give New Jersey a 3-1 lead before the Penguins rallied.
Pittsburgh pulled within 3-2 just 3:13 into the final period on a goal by Brian Dumoulin off a pass from Crosby. Pittsburgh then tied the game on a power-play goal by Phil Kessel at the 10:52 mark.
Neither team could capitalize on several late chances, and the game went to overtime.
Crosby gave the Penguins the early 1-0 lead just 2:29 into the first period when he scored off a long-distance shot by Jamie Oleksiak that was deflected by Devils goalie Keith Kinkaid.
A second-period penalty on Penguins right winger Bryan Rust proved costly as Butcher took advantage and tied the game 1-1 at 5:15.
New Jersey then took the lead 2:05 later when Coleman fired a one-handed shot past Pittsburgh goalie Matt Murray, who was making his second start since returning from a concussion. Murray finished with 30 saves.
The Devils extended the advantage to 3-1 on their first 4-on-4 goal of the season when Hischier scored on a counterattack at 8:54.
Kinkaid made 40 saves.
The Devils won the previous two meetings against the Penguins this season, 3-1 on Feb. 3 and 3-2 on Feb. 27. The teams play again Thursday in New Jersey.
—Field Level Media