The Calgary Flames (27-24-3) erased a 3-2 third-period deficit to win their third straight overall. Matt Stajan tied the game with his fifth goal at 7:22 of the third; and Mikael Backlund netted the winner 1:13 into overtime. File Photo by Archie Carpenter/UPI | License Photo
NEWARK, N.J. -- While the Calgary Flames found a way to rally for an important 4-3 overtime victory on the road Friday night, the New Jersey Devils continued their recent misery on home ice losing for the seventh consecutive time at the Prudential Center.
The Flames (27-24-3) erased a 3-2 third-period deficit to win their third straight overall. Matt Stajan tied the game with his fifth goal at 7:22 of the third; and Mikael Backlund netted the winner 1:13 into overtime.
On the winning play, Calgary defenseman T.J. Brodie skated in on right wing, drawing Devils goalie Corey Schneider towards him, before sending a cross-ice pass to Backlund who zipped his 15th goal of the season into the back of the net. The win was Calgary's seventh in overtime this season.
"I tried to get it off quick," Backlund said of his team-high fifth game-winning goal. "He's a quick goalie, so I tried to go high and quick against him."
Brodie assisted on all four Flames goals, establishing a career high for most points in a game. He also became the first Calgary defenseman since Dion Phaneuf in 2008 to record four assists in a single contest.
"I'd like to take some credit for that," said Flames coach Glen Gulutzan with a smile after the game. "I had a long meeting with T.J. Brodie this morning and I told him I wanted him to shoot more and not pass so much...and he gets four assists, so he didn't listen to me at all. So, I'm going to take credit for those four assists."
The Devils (21-22-9) have not won at home since Jan. 2, posting an 0-5-2 record in that span. They are just 1-7-2 their last ten at the Prudential Center.
"We have got to find a way to win at home," said Adam Henrique, who scored a goal and assisted on another Friday for the Devils. "We started the year great at home, and right now it's going the opposite way."
After spotting the Flames a 2-0 lead by the 22-second mark of the second period, the Devils stormed back and scored three consecutive goals to carry a 3-2 advantage into the third period, and seemed poised to finally pick up a win in front of their home crowd.
Henrique got the Devils going at 8:36, coming out from behind the net to stuff his 14th goal of the season, and third in the last three games, inside the right post to make it 2-1.
New Jersey nearly pulled even less than two minutes later when Kyle Palmieri's diving backhand shot hit the post. However, Calgary's Sam Bennett was assessed a slashing minor on the play, and the Devils tied the game, 2-2, at 11:39 when rookie Pavel Zacha snuck a left-wing shot past Brian Elliott for a power play goal.
The Devils then cashed in on another power play opportunity to take their first lead of the night with just 23.7 seconds remaining in the second period. Palmieri was credited with his 14th goal, third in the past two games, when the puck caromed off the shaft of his stick and into the net as he crashed the crease to follow up a shot by Miles Wood.
"Just a fortunate bounce," said Palmieri. "In the end, though, a point is nice, but we need two. I don't think we can look at this for moral victories. It's time to string wins together."
The Flames tied the game in the third period in somewhat similar fashion as, like Palmieri did on his goal, Stajan steamed to the net with Brodie's shot bouncing off him and past Schneider.
The scorching-hot Sean Monahan scored his ninth goal in 10 games, and team-high 19th of the season, at 17:15 of the first period to give the Flames a 1-0 lead. Kris Versteeg then ripped a right-wing shot through an Alex Chiasson screen for a power play goal in the opening minute of the second to make it 2-0 Calgary before the Devils got their offense untracked.
Elliott made 26 saves in the win for the Flames, while Schneider had 34 for New Jersey.
"I don't think we can say it was our best game of the season, but we battled to get those points," said Elliott.
-- LW Joseph Blandisi made his season debut for the Devils after being recalled from Albany of the American Hockey League on Thursday. The 22-year-old Blandisi, who appeared in 41 games with the Devils last season and recorded five goals and 12 assists, had 23 points (seven goals, 16 assists) in 28 contests with Albany at the time of his recall.
-- Devils D Andy Greene returned to the lineup after a 12-game absence due to an upper body injury.
-- Earlier on Friday, LW Luke Gazdic cleared waivers and was assigned to Albany by the Devils.
-- New Jersey scratched C Vernon Fiddler, RW Devante Smith-Pelly and D Karl Stollery, while Calgary scratched C Freddie Hamilton, RW Garnet Hathaway and D Brett Kulak.