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Bruins fall to Devils, 3-2

Summary — The Bruins’ struggles continued Monday night in New Jersey against the Devils in a game that confirmed suspicions of their inability to complete a comeback from a multiple-goal deficit.

With New Jersey holding a 3-1 lead late in the third, a one-timer from Dennis Seidenberg [1] was redirected by Patrice Bergeron [2] in front of Martin Brodeur’s net at 18:57 of the period to give the Bruins hope in a 3-2 game. However, they failed to get the equalizer in the final seconds with Tuuka Rask pulled, sealing their fate and the victory for the Devils.

Tim Thomas [3] got the start for the Bruins, but it wasn’t more than an ugly first period before he was replaced and the Bruins were forced to seek new life under Rask.

A shot from David Clarkson from in between the circles was tipped by Rob Neidermayer at 9:58 for the Devils’ first goal, which gave them a lead that they would never lose.

Later in the period Martin Brodeur [4] sent a pass down the ice to Clarkson, who caught it from center ice and never looked back, taking it in on the breakaway and giving the Devils a 2-0 lead. Zach Parise [5] capitalized on a Mike Mottau rebound seconds later to make it 3-0.

To the Bruins credit, they did seem to find their second wind once Rask went between the pipes to start the second period. It was only 43 seconds into the period that Blake Wheeler [6] tipped a Mark Stuart [7] shot past Brodeur and got the Bruins on the board.

Three Stars

David Clarkson — The Devils forward appeared to have his first goal since November on New Jersey’s first goal, but after it was credited to Neidermayer he added one of his own later in the first period for good measure.

Martin Brodeur — In a game that highlighted the Bruins’ uncertainty between the pipes, the other goaltender again stood out, thanks to his 34 saves on 36 shots.

Mark Stuart — Stuart gets on here before Wheeler because he brought the whole package — offense, defense, and muscle — with him against the Devils en route to being the only Bruin to post a plus-one.

Turning Point — The Parise goal. It came so soon after the Devils’ second tally that it made an otherwise somewhat-close period look like an insurmountable hole as the Bruins headed to the locker room.

Key Play — Mark Stuart stapling Jamie Langenbrunner at the blue line with about six and a half to go in the second period. If the Bruins want to be able to carry any swagger it will be from big hits like this, which led to a fight with Rod Pelley seconds later.