NEWARK, N.J. — Petr Mrazek showed some of his old swagger as he stoned the New Jersey Devils.
Mrazek made 37 saves on Monday at Prudential Center to help the Detroit Red Wings to a 3-0 victory. It was Mrazek’s second straight shutout and third of the season.
Tyler Bertuzzi scored in the first period and David Booth made it 2-0 entering the third period. Mrazek made a highlight reel save when Brian Boyle tested from point-blank range during the Devils’ fourth power play, early in the third period.
Dylan Larkin scored an insurance goal at 11:03, earning his second point of the night. Andreas Athanasiou delivered his third two-point performance in the last four games.
It’s an encouraging sign for Mrazek, who had a largely mediocre first half.
The Devils had a 7-2 edge in shots after 5 minutes, but the Wings struck big at 6:36 of the first period. Athanasiou won a puck battle and sent the puck to Larkin, who swiped a backhand shot on net. Cory Schneider stopped that, but Bertuzzi got to the rebound and popped into the net for his second goal of the season. Mrazek made stops on a Blake Coleman tip and a John Moore slap shot among 11 saves in the first period. The Wings had 12 shots in the first period.
Power play rots
The Wings went on a power play at 2:15 of the second period. They were 3-for-36 on power plays the previous 11 games, scoring in the previous game after making some personnel swaps on the two units. Neither unit looked good against the Devils, failing to generate good chances or any momentum on the first opportunity. On the second power play, Bertuzzi had a chance right away, but otherwise there was little to laud.
Penalty kill reps
On the flip side, Bertuzzi, Athanasiou and Dominic Turgeon got in some good reps in place of injured penalty killers Luke Glendening, Darren Helm and Justin Abdelkader. Mrazek played a big role in the Wings going 3-for-3 on PKs in the second period, coming through with six saves. The Wings killed off two penalties in the third period, with Mrazek making five saves during those stretches.
Booth provided a good example of why it’s good to have a shot-first mentality. Jonathan Ericsson fed Booth the puck near the top of the left circle and Booth wound up a slap shot that deflected into New Jersey’s net at 18:12 of the second period to make it 2-0.
Joe Hicketts made his NHL debut noticeable with a big hit on Devils forward Nico Hischier in the first period.
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