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Devils down Islanders behind Hedberg's shutout

Nov 26, 2011 - 3:49 AM
Uniondale, NY (Sports Network) - Johan Hedberg made 23 saves and stopped a penalty shot, and the standout performance lifted the Devils to a 1-0 victory over the Islanders in the opener of a home-and-home set.

Petr Sykora scored a power play goal in the second period, supplying enough offense for Hedberg to record his second shutout of the season. The Devils were coming off Wednesday's 2-1 shootout victory against Columbus.

"I think we played a good, very solid team game, allowed me to play aggressive," Hedberg said. "The PK (penalty kill) was outstanding. We stuck to our game plan."

Al Montoya also faced 23 shots but let in one as the Islanders dropped their fourth consecutive game. They have lost eight of nine overall.

The only goal in Friday's game occurred with 5:47 left in the second period, when Sykora beat Montoya with a power-play slap marker. Sykora got the puck in the slot after Adam Larsson's stick broke on a shot attempt.

The Isles had a good chance to even the game with 7:10 left in the third period on a penalty shot by Michael Grabner, who was pulled down on a breakaway chance.

However, Hedberg made a glove save on Grabner's backhander to keep New York off the board.

"I didn't get a lot out of the open chances," Grabner said. "I just have to find a way to score at least one."

Game Notes

The teams close the home-and-home Saturday in Newark...The Isles were 0-for-4 on the power play...Friday's game was the first in the Devils-Islanders series this season. New Jersey has beaten New York in five consecutive matchups...After the game, Islanders forward John Tavares was fined $2,500 by the National Hockey League for a slash against New Jersey forward Zach Parise at 3:51 of the second period. No penalty was assessed on the play and the fine is the maximum allowed.