There's no magic formula or secret strategy involved. The New York Islanders simply know how to beat the New Jersey Devils.
Rick DiPietro had 37 saves and Bill Guerin scored two goals in a 3-1 victory Wednesday night that gave the Islanders their fifth win in five games against the Devils this season.
``We just seem to play well against them,'' DiPietro said. ``You find if you play long enough, there are certain teams you play well against. The last couple of years, it has been the Devils.''
It sure has. New York has won four of the five meetings in regulation, and has victories in six straight against the Atlantic Division-leading Devils, dating to last season.
``It doesn't take a rocket scientist, does it?'' Devils forward Patrik Elias said. ``They are playing well against us. They are playing well against Philly and us. Those are big points to lose. We had our opportunities to get back in the game, but it's still disappointing to lose. Their goaltender played awesome tonight.''
DiPietro, who has given up five goals in four games against New Jersey this season, was spectacular in the third period, stopping 15 of 16 shots. That included one in close by Dainius Zubrus in the final 90 seconds that had the Devils' center looking up at the rafters in the Prudential Center.
``Tonight, Ricky saved us a couple of points,'' Guerin said. ``I thought we played a solid game, but when they turned it up and got good scoring opportunities, Ricky was there.''
In other NHL games, it was: Philadelphia 5, Florida 3; the New York Rangers 2, Buffalo 1; Chicago 6, St. Louis 1; and Calgary 3, Minnesota 2 in a shootout.
At Newark, N.J., Mike Sillinger also scored for the Islanders.
Travis Zajac scored for New Jersey, which had a three-game winning streak snapped in losing for only the seventh time in 26 games (19-6-1).
``Have we come out on top every game? Yes!'' Guerin said, downplaying the Islanders' dominance of his former team. ``It's not like it's been a dominating effort by us each and every single time. They have been good hockey games.''
Flyers 5, Panthers 3
Daniel Briere scored twice and Kimmo Timonen had a goal and two assists as host Philadelphia denied Florida coach Jacques Martin his 500th win.
Simon Gagne and Scott Hartnell also scored for the Flyers, who took a 4-1 lead in the first period.
Jay Bouwmeester, Rostislav Olesz, and Stephen Weiss had goals for the Panthers.
Rangers 2, Sabres 1
Petr Prucha and Brandon Dubinsky each had a goal and an assist as the Rangers stretched visiting Buffalo's losing streak to 10 games.
Buffalo snapped its run of three straight shootout losses, but still hasn't come out on top since a 6-5 shootout victory at Philadelphia on Dec. 22 (0-5-5).
Henrik Lundqvist made 23 saves for his 20th win. Jason Pominville scored and Ryan Miller was sharp for the Sabres in stopping 33 shots.
Blackhawks 6, Blues 1
Rookie Patrick Kane had two goals and an assist, and Patrick Lalime made 32 saves in host Chicago's win.
Dustin Byfuglien had a goal and two assists for the Blackhawks, who won their second straight following an eight-game (0-6-2) losing streak. Jack Skille, Rene Bourque and Yanic Perreault also scored for Chicago.
Lee Stempniak scored for the Blues, who lost their third straight (0-2-1).
St. Louis goalie Manny Legace left after the first period with an injured right arm, but is expected to play in the Blues' next game.
Flames 3, Wild 2, SO
Jarome Iginla scored the winning goal in the shootout, lifting visiting Calgary.
Miikka Kiprusoff made 29 saves in regulation and then stopped Mikko Koivu in the shootout after Kristian Huselius opened with a goal. When Brian Rolston missed the net with one of his trademark slap shots, it was up to Iginla to win it.
Brent Burns and Kurtis Foster scored in regulation for the Wild, and David Moss and Huselius had goals for the Flames.

NHL Top Stories

Thumbnail Blackhawks vs. Lightning Pick Who has the edge when the Tampa Bay Lightning play host to the Chicago Blackhawks tonight at...
Thumbnail Canadiens vs. Stars Pick Are the Dallas Stars going to take care of business on their home ice versus the Montreal Canadiens tonight at 8:30PM...
Thumbnail Oilers vs. Blues Pick Are the Edmonton Oilers going to upset the host St. Louis Blues tonight at 8PM...
Thumbnail Flames vs. Capitals Pick Will the Washington Capitals be able to fend off the Calgary Flames when the two teams meet up tonight at 7PM...

NHL Team Pages