NEWARK, N.J – The New Jersey Devils puck luck had to run out at some point.
That point come on Tuesday night, in a 4-2 loss to the Carolina Hurricanes at Prudential Center.
After five straight wins of at least two goals, the Devils (8-2-3) saw that streak end on Tuesday. New Jersey tied the game early in the third period on a goal from Ryan Carter, but Carolina (7-4-1) answered with two goals from Jiri Tlusty to top the Eastern Conference-leading Devils.
The loss is New Jersey’s first regulation loss at home and the first regulation loss when it scored the first goal of the game.
It’s the Devils first loss since Feb. 2, when they fell to the Pittsburgh Penguins, 5-1.
Ilya Kovalchuk put the Devils on the board first with a power play goal in the first period. Kovalchuk’s shot from the point was originally ruled as no-goal, but after 3:12 ticked off and the play was reviewed, New Jersey was awarded the clear-cut goal as the puck drilled the back of the net and popped out.
The Hurricanes struck for two goals in the second period — one from Jussi Jokinen on the power play and a deflection from Patrick Dwyer to take a 2-1 lead into the second intermission before Carter’s game-tying goal in the early moments of the third period.
New Jersey created a ton of chances with the net empty in the final minute of the game, but Bobby Butler barely missed a loose puck outside the crease and Kovalchuk nearly jammed home another chance. In the end, Hurricanes’ goalie Cam Ward was on top of his game, stopping 26 shots on the night.
Devils’ goalie Martin Brodeur finished with 21 saves.
Although the New Jersey didn’t extend its win streak, it did continue streaks of getting a power play goal, which hit six, and points from a defensemen, which the Devils have done in every game this season. Defensemen Marek Zidlicky dished an assist on Kovalchuk’s goal to keep that streak alive at 13 games.
The Devils next game is on Friday, when they host the Philadelphia Flyers at 7 p.m.