Newark, NJ - Tuomo Ruutu had a strong game, notching an assist and the game-winning-goal in his Devils home debut against his former Carolina Hurricanes.
Ruutu helped the Devils to an early lead by assisting a Travis Zajac goal at 4:25 in the first period.
The Hurricanes tied the game in the second period when Jeff Skinner received the puck off the boards behind the net and floated it past Martin Brodeur.
The Devils exploded for three more goals in the second period, a power play goal by Damien Brunner and two by Adam Henrique. Brunner put a backhand shot just under the crossbar to give the Devils a 2-1 lead.
Henrique scored his 22nd goal on a breakaway, then just under four minutes later he scored a short-handed goal for his 23rd of the year.
But the ‘Canes cut the lead to two in that same power play with a wrist shot from Jay Harrison.
The Devils came out slow in the third and ended up blowing the lead at 12:39 with goals from Nathan Gerbe and Alexander Semin.
But newly acquired Ruutu found the back of the net just 21-seconds later for the game-winner, earning him first star of the game and “Ruutu!” chants from the crowd.
The Devils earned an important two points tonight, keeping them two behind the eighth spot in the Eastern Conference. They will head to Philadelphia Tuesday for a chance to make up some ground in both the conference and the division.