Johnsson, Bratt goals put Devils over Flyers, 5-2
NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — Andreas Johnsson had two goals and two assists, Jesper Bratt had a goal and two assists and the New Jersey Devils beat the Philadelphia Flyers 5-2 Sunday night.
Dougie Hamilton had a goal, an assist and 10 shots on goal, and Nathan Bastian also scored for New Jersey. Mackenzie Blackwood made 22 saves for New Jersey, which snapped a two-game losing streak and won at home for the first time since Nov. 11.
“Total team effort,” Johnsson said. “We gave them a little opportunity at first to come back in the game, but we stayed with it and we were patient and we scored a couple of huge goals in the end.”
For the Flyers, Joel Farabee scored in his third straight game and Scott Laughton had a goal and an assist. Martin Jones made 30 saves, and Philadelphia dropped its sixth game in a row.
“You’ve got to stick together,” Laughton said. “It’s better this happens in November than late in the year. We’re still in it. We’ve lost six in a row, but we’re still in it. You’ve got to stay positive.”
Bratt broke a 2-all tie with eight minutes left in the third period. Johnsson stole the puck in the Flyers zone and fed Bratt, who beat Martin Jones on a backhand shot. Bratt extended his point streak to four games and now has 14 points (three goals, 10 assists) in 12 games in November.
″(Bratt) did a great job screaming at me to let me know he was there,” Johnsson said. “I just had to put it on his stick and knew he was going to score once he got it.”
Bastian sealed the win with his second goal of the season — and first for the Devils. The 2016 Devils draft pick was chosen by the Seattle Kraken in the 2021 expansion draft, but claimed by New Jersey off waivers Thursday.
“I think inside the room, that room feels good about what every line did,” New Jersey coach Lindy Ruff said. “I like to see (fourth-line) guys get rewarded.”
Hamilton broke the ice for New Jersey at 5:07 of the first. It was his sixth goal of the season, which leads all Devils defensemen and is tied with Florida’s Aaron Ekblad for third-most among NHL blueliners.
“He reads the game so well,” Johnsson said of Hamilton. “He’s very hard to play against and puts the pucks up to the forwards right away, joins the offense when it’s time to do that, plays great defense. He’s just a general out there.”
Laughton knotted the score with three minutes to go in the first with his first short-handed goal of the season. After the Flyers won a puck battle at the Devils blue line, Provorov hit Laughton with a breakout pass, and he outmuscled Devils defenseman P.K. Subban then flipped a backhand shot past Blackwood.
Johnsson snapped a 1-all tie with his eighth goal of the season at 1:47 of the second. Then, the Flyers tied the game at 3:04 in the third when Laughton took an errant pass behind the Devils net, then fed Farabee for his seventh goal of the season, pulling him into a tie with Cam Atkinson and Claude Giroux for the team lead.
“He’s been good for us,” Laughton said of Farabee. “He always makes good plays with the puck. He plays hard. ... It’s good to have guys like that in the lineup.”
DEVILS FIGHT CANCER
New Jersey held its annual Hockey Fights Cancer game on Sunday. Lucas Files, a 12-year-old Devils fan from Manahawkin, New Jersey, who completed treatment from acute lymphoblastic leukemia in 2018, dropped the puck for a ceremonial faceoff between New Jersey captain Nico Hischier and Flyers forward and cancer survivor Oskar Lindblom.
The Flyers haven’t won in regulation since defeating the Carolina Hurricanes 2-1 on Nov. 12. They’ve fallen to 1-5-2 and been outscored 31-15 in that span.
Devils defenseman Ty Smith returned to the lineup after missing the past two games as a healthy scratch. He played 15:24 and was plus-1.
Flyers center Nate Thompson is sidelined indefinitely with an upper-body injury. Thompson was hurt in the third period Philadelphia’s 6-3 loss to the Hurricanes on Friday.
Philadelphia: Tuesday’s scheduled game against the Islanders was postponed due to a COVID-19 outbreak for New York, so the next game is at New York Rangers on Wednesday night.
New Jersey: Closes two-game homestand by taking on San Jose on Tuesday night.
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