At some point, the New Jersey Devils will need to pick up that extra point.
For the third consecutive game, the Devils’ (3-0-3) sloppy play cost them a chance to win, falling 5-4, in overtime, to the New York Islanders (4-2-1), Thursday night at Prudential Center.
After losing to the Montreal Canadiens in overtime on Sunday and the Boston Bruins in a shootout on Tuesday, the Devils dropped their third straight extra-period game on Thursday, playing in their fourth consecutive overtime game overall.
New Jersey’s game was filled with mistakes against the Islanders, but it rallied to erase deficits of 2-0, 3-2, and 4-3 to send the game into overtime, but a costly penalty ended their chances.
The puck skittered to the front of the net after Devils goalie Martin Brodeur attempted to clear the puck behind the net, but couldn’t get it past two Islanders forwards.
“We didn’t deserve to win, we didn’t play well enough to win,” Devils head coach Pete DeBoer said, according to The Bergen Record.
In one facet of the game, special teams killed the Devils on Thursday. New York scored on three of its four power plays — including the game-winner in overtime — and the Devils couldn’t find any sort of rhythm on their own power play.
After falling down 2-0 behind Islanders goals from John Tavares, who scored twice, and Keith Aucoin, the Devils answered with goals from that magical line from the playoffs: Steve Bernier and Ryan Carter to climb back into it.
Tavares’ second goal off a rush gave New York another lead, 3-2, but New Jersey answered when Tallinder took a pass from Travis Zajac and ripped it past Evgeni Nabokov to tie the game back at three late in the second period.
In the third period, after the Islanders took a 4-3, Devils center Adam Henrique, who had jumped up to the top line, got to a loose puck and scored top-shelf over Nabokov late in the game.
It was Henrique’s season debut after breaking his wrist while playing in the AHL during the lockout. He received a thunderous ovation from the sold-out Devils crowd and chants of ‘Hen-Rique’ during his first shift and after his third-period goal.
The win for New York moved them into a tie, at nine points, with New Jersey atop the Atlantic Division.
New Jersey is off on Friday before traveling to take on the Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday.