New Jersey’s Alexei Ponikarovsky scored on his own rebound in overtime to give the Devils a 4-3 win over the Philadelphia Flyers on Thursday and a 2-1 lead in the NHL Eastern Conference semi-final.
Patrik Elias, Ilya Kovalchuk and Zach Parise also scored for the Devils, who killed two penalties in overtime before Ponikarovsky came through with his first goal of the postseason on a backhander that sneaked past Ilya Bryzgalov.
Martin Brodeur made 25 saves for New Jersey. Kovalchuk, who missed Game 2 with a lower body injury, also had two assists in his return, including one on the game winner.
Danny Briere, Matt Carle and Brayden Schenn scored for the Flyers. Bryzgalov had 27 saves.
KINGS 4, BLUES 2
In Los Angeles, California, Drew Doughty had a goal and two assists to help Los Angeles to a win that put them on the brink of a place in the Western Conference final, holding a 3-0 series lead over St Louis.
Jonathan Quick made 18 saves for the eighth-seeded Kings, who improved to 7-1 in this postseason with a third-straight dominant win over the Blues.
Mike Richards scored the Kings’ first power-play goal in six games before setting up Doughty’s clinching goal with 11 minutes, 48 seconds to play.
Justin Williams and Dwight King also scored for Los Angeles, while Anze Kopitar had two assists.
Chris Stewart scored twice and Brian Elliott stopped 18 shots in a shaky performance for the Blues, who must accomplish just the fourth comeback from an 0-3 deficit in NHL history to advance.
The Kings can clinch their first conference finals berth in 19 years by winning Game 4 tomorrow.