Thursday, June 21, 2018
Sports

Devils' chance on rookie pays off

PHILADELPHIA — Adam Larsson watched Game 1 from the press box, dressed sharply in a suit and tie. He sat helpless as he watched his Devils lose a tough road opener in the Eastern Conference semifinal series to the Flyers in overtime.

In Game 2, though, he received his chance to shed the suit and don a uniform.

And the 19-year-old rookie took full advantage.

Larsson scored the first postseason goal of his career off a wrist shot in the third, igniting a four-goal explosion in the period, as the Devils rallied to a 4-1 win over Philadelphia on Tuesday night. The best of seven series is tied at 1-1.

"I know how the playoffs (are)," Larsson said. "I watched all the games from the stands. I know that everybody steps up a little bit. I knew in my mind, if I wanted to stay in the lineup, I had to step it up."

Larsson and Clarkson scored consecutive goals in the third period to rally the Devils past the Flyers and make up for the absence of Ilya Kovalchuk. The Devils played without their regular-season leading scorer because of a lower-body injury.

Travis Zajac added a late goal to make it 3-1, and Bryce Salvador scored a late empty-netter for the Devils.

Game 3 is Thursday in Newark, N.J.

Matt Read scored 2:53 in to give the Flyers an early jump. But the offense went into a funk and goaltender Ilya Bryzgalov couldn't protect the advantage.

Bryzgalov, who signed a $51 million, nine-year deal over the summer, was especially stout in the second when he bailed out the Flyers offense with a 12-save period. The Flyers went more than 18 minutes before taking a shot on Martin Brodeur.

"I didn't sense frustration. We were comfortable with how we played the first two periods," Devils coach Peter DeBoer said. "And it was just a matter of keeping it going in the third. And the goals came."

Bryzgalov had a brutal first five games of the postseason and allowed 20 goals against Pittsburgh. But he shut down the Penguins in the Game 6 clincher, a 5-1 win, and let in three goals in Game 1 against the Devils.

He appeared to have turned the corner.

Then came the final period.

Kovalchuk's injury opened a roster spot for Larsson, a rookie defenseman, to be activated. Larsson had two goals and 18 points in his first season but made his playoff debut Tuesday.

"Down a goal, third period, and it was huge," DeBoer said of the rookie's goal. "I feel great for Larsson. He's been out a few games, and he responded."

Devils0044
Flyers1001

First Period1, Philadelphia, Read 3 (Schenn, Simmonds), 2:53. Penaltiesvan Riemsdyk, Phi (slashing), 4:22; Timonen, Phi (hooking), 9:26; Gionta, NJ (slashing), 14:18; Salvador, NJ (interference), 20:00.

Second PeriodNone. PenaltiesBriere, Phi (holding), 12:49; Henrique, NJ (slashing), 18:44.

Third Period2, New Jersey, Larsson 1 (Zubrus, Harrold), 3:08. 3, New Jersey, Clarkson 1 (Parise), 11:17. 4, New Jersey, Zajac 5 (Gionta, Zubrus), 14:01. 5, New Jersey, Salvador 1 (Henrique), 17:09 (en-sh). PenaltiesZidlicky, NJ (elbowing), 1:39; Hartnell, Phi (holding stick), 1:52; Zubrus, NJ (interference), 15:35; Clarkson, NJ (roughing), 19:44; Lilja, Phi (roughing), 19:44; Talbot, Phi, misconduct, 19:44; Simmonds, Phi, minor-misconduct (roughing), 20:00. Shots on GoalNew Jersey 13-12-10—35. Philadelphia 9-2-9—20. Power-play opportunitiesNew Jersey 0 of 4; Philadelphia 0 of 5. GoaliesNew Jersey, Brodeur 5-3-0 (20 shots-19 saves). Philadelphia, Bryzgalov 5-3-0 (34-31). A20,131 (19,537). T2:25.

PREDATORS SUSPEND TWO: Predators forwards Alexander Radulov and Andrei Kostitsyn have been suspended for tonight's Game 3 for violating unspecified team rules. General manager David Poile refused to specify what Radulov and Kostitsyn did, but called their behavior unfortunate and selfish.

Comments
Rays journal: 7 pitches, 3 straight homers prove too much in loss to Astros

Rays journal: 7 pitches, 3 straight homers prove too much in loss to Astros

HOUSTON — The Rays were engaged in a third straight tight, go-either-way battle with the defending champ Astros on Wednesday.Until they were not.A brutal seven-pitch sequence by starter Nathan Eovaldi changed everything, as he gave up three con...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Rays see the results of keeping a good, young core group together

Rays see the results of keeping a good, young core group together

HOUSTON — The Rays saw a lot on the weeklong trip that ended with Wednesday's game against that Astros, beyond the street hustlers prowling in Times Square and the urban cowboys and girls parading through H-town.There was an impressive debuting...
Updated: 8 hours ago
Kevin Knox poised to become Tampa Bay’s highest NBA draft pick

Kevin Knox poised to become Tampa Bay’s highest NBA draft pick

Kevin Knox Sr. was watching the NFL draft 24 years ago when the phone rang. Buffalo coach Marv Levy was on the other line."Marv said they were taking me," said Knox Sr., a standout receiver at FSU.Soon after, Knox Sr. saw his name scroll across ESPN'...
Updated: 9 hours ago
Lightning’s Victor Hedman wins NHL’s Norris Trophy

Lightning’s Victor Hedman wins NHL’s Norris Trophy

Victor Hedman, a relentless part of the Lightning's push to the Eastern Conference final last season, was honored Wednesday night with the Norris Trophy, given to the NHL's top defenseman."To the Lightning organization, Mr. Jeff Vinik, Steve Yzerman ...
Updated: 9 hours ago
Marc Topkin’s takeaways from Wednesday’s Rays-Astros game

Marc Topkin’s takeaways from Wednesday’s Rays-Astros game

RHP Nathan Eovaldi said before his rough start Wednesday against the Astros that he was pitching better than his numbers showed. Well … In four starts since his six no-hit innings debut, he's 0-3 with a 6.17 ERA, allowing eight homers, four Wed...
Updated: 9 hours ago

Sports on TV/radio for Thursday, June 21

TODAYBaseballRed Sox at Twins1 p.m.MLBMets at Rockies (in progress)4 p.m.MLBCubs at Reds7 p.m.MLBBlue Jays at Angels10 p.m.MLBCollege baseball, World SeriesFlorida vs. Texas Tech8 p.m.ESPNUGolfPGA: Traveler’s Championship3:30 p.m.GolfHorsesRoyal Asco...
Updated: 9 hours ago
Report: Bucs QB Jameis Winston bracing for suspension from NFL

Report: Bucs QB Jameis Winston bracing for suspension from NFL

Bucs quarterback Jameis Winston could be suspended for up to three games  next season following the league's investigation into allegations he groped a female Uber driver in Arizona in 2016, a Tallahassee radio station reported.Jeff Cameron, a&#...
Updated: 9 hours ago
For starters: Rays at Astros, with a different look

For starters: Rays at Astros, with a different look

UPDATE, 6:43: Cash said the key to how the pieced the lineup together was the opportunity to give Cron (who is struggling) and Duffy (who is doing well) back to back days off. … Looking ahead to the weekend, the Rays will use RHP Ryne Stanek as...
Published: 06/20/18
Phil Mickelson apologizes four days after hitting moving ball at U.S. Open

Phil Mickelson apologizes four days after hitting moving ball at U.S. Open

NEW YORK — Phil Mickelson has apologized four days after intentionally violating golf rules by hitting a moving ball on the green at the U.S. Open, saying his frustration got the best of him. The apology came Wednesday in a statement released by his ...
Published: 06/20/18
Tough questions are mere child’s play for Kevin Knox

Tough questions are mere child’s play for Kevin Knox

Growing up, Kevin Knox II watched videos or listened to motivational tapes during car rides to and from school so he could learn how to expand upon answers in interviews.That was all by design.His father, Kevin Knox Sr., knew about the spotlight as a...
Published: 06/20/18