Brodeur ties Roy record in win over Habs

Patrik Elias' goal with 2:36 remaining lifted the New Jersey Devils to a 2-1 home victory Wednesday night as Martin Brodeur matched the NHL mark for career regular-season appearances by a goalie.

Patrik Elias made Martin Brodeur a winner on another milestone night for the Devils goalie.

Elias sneaked in behind the Montreal defence and converted a setup from linemate Brian Rolston with 2:36 remaining to lift New Jersey to a 2-1 home victory Wednesday on the same night Brodeur matched the NHL mark for career regular-season appearances by a netminder.

Brodeur's 1,029 games played — all with Jersey — ties him with Canadiens great Patrick Roy, whose career wins record Brodeur broke last season.

"It's durability," said Brodeur, who until missing four months with an elbow injury last season hadn't been seriously hurt in his  career. "That's what playing a lot of games is. It's being durable, and it's being successful, because if you're not, the coach doesn't put you in there."

The Devils goalie, 37, remains even with Terry Sawchuk for the all-time shutouts mark with 103.

Montreal forward Travis Moen ensured Brodeur wouldn't set two records in one night when he capitalized on a turnover at the Habs blue-line to race in for a short-handed goal in the first period.

Ilkka Pikkarainen tied the game late in the second with a less-than-fantastic first NHL goal. The rookie forward flicked a shot well over the net, but Canadiens goalie Carey Price couldn't squeeze it and the puck bounced off the post, off Price's foot and in.

"I saw the shot coming and I reached above my head to try and glove it down," said Price, who finished with 25 saves "I guess I batted it down right behind me. I thought it was still up in the air, so I started backing up. I guess I kicked it in."

Unable to break through the Devils' vaunted defensive scheme in the third period, Montreal (15-17-3) mustered just three shots en route to its fourth consecutive loss — all by a single goal.

Brodeur's 17 saves were enough to deliver New Jersey (23-8-1) its sixth win in seven games, pulling the Devils even with Pittsburgh for top spot in the Atlantic Division.

"It was kind of boring, but it was a big win," Brodeur said. "We were playing a team that is not doing really well right now so they are trying to keep it simple. They really didn't do much out there and they didn't give us many opportunities."