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Tyler Kennedy of the Devils looks to control the puck. Photo Credit: Bill Wippert/NHLi via Getty Images


EAST HANOVER, NJ – Corey Schneider made 25 saves en-route to earning his first shutout since November, 14th as the Devils blanked the Sabres 2-0 and moved into a tie with the idle Boston Bruins for the top spot in the wildcard race on Tuesday night at the First Niagara Center in Buffalo.

This was a big bounce back game for the Devils (16-11-4), who were soundly defeated by the New York Islanders 4-0, just two nights ago. It was a game that Coach John Hynes gave his squad an ‘F-’ in.

Certainly, the first-year coach for New Jersey will have a higher grade for his team this time around. New Jersey played a sound game on both sides of the ice and Schneider did yet another solid job of protecting his cage.

The Sabres (13-16-3) did not have many quality scoring chances due in large part to the Devil’s shut-down defensive performance; led by the top unit in Andy Greene and Adam Larsson. Schneider did make one highlight reel save when he denied Matt Moulson on a juicy rebound try when the Devils were up 1-0 in the final frame.

Lee Stempniak scored first for New Jersey when he collected a rebound off a Mike Cammalleri slap shot and fired it past Sabres goaltender Linus Ullmark. Adam Henrique had the secondary assist on the goal. It was the veteran center’s first game back after missing the previous two with a lower-body injury.

The second goal for the Devils came at the beginning of the third, but by the way the game was going it was easy to see that this tally was going to be more than enough to seal the victory. A couple of Sabres defenders had a chance to clear the puck out of their end, but it took a funny hop and ended up on the stick of Jiri Tlusty as he blasted it past an unexpected Ullmark.

It was Tlusty’s first goal since opening night when the Devils were defeated by the Winnipeg Jets.

New Jersey killed off all three of Buffalo’s power-play chances. They failed to record a shot on their lone try on the man advantage.  

The Devil’s will next play against the Florida Panthers (15-12-4) on Thursday night at 7 p.m. at the Prudential Center. New Jersey defeated Florida just nine days by a score of 4-2.



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