NEWARK, N.J. -- It took five games for Marc-Andre Fleury to regain the timing that made him a vital part of Pittsburgh's Stanley Cup Final run last season.
Fleury, making his fifth straight start after missing 12 games because of an undisclosed injury, had his 12th career shutout. He was sharp throughout, especially in the third period when he stopped Jay Pandolfo's short-handed bid and made a dazzling blocker save against Jamie Langenbrunner.
"I'm feeling better, timing wise," Fleury said. "It's the foot movement. I'm in the right place at the right time now."
He certainly was for the Penguins, winners for only the fourth time in the last 10 games.
"It's pretty cool, " Fleury said. "I want to do my part and help out. I tried to make the saves and keep the game close."
Penguins coach Michel Therrien felt his team played better as the game went on.
"It was a rugged first period without a lot of flow," Therrien said. "I thought we played really well in the second and got the lead, and defended it well in the third. And the star of the game was Fleury. He made key save after key save."
The Devils came close on a number of occasions, but came away with nothing. Fleury saved it in the closing seconds with a pair of pad stops on Langenbrunner after the Devils pulled Clemmensen for an extra attacker in the final minute.
"He played well," Devils coach Brent Sutter said of Fleury. "He made some big saves for them. That being said, we made him look good at certain times too, where we had opportunities and we hit him in the crest."
The Devils have squandered a lot of opportunities lately. They were shut out 2-0 by Boston on Tuesday night and have not scored in seven regulation periods.
Fedotenko got the goal at 12:51 of the second, taking a return pass from Evgeni Malkin and firing a shot from the slot that Clemmensen partially blocked.
The Devils thought they had the equalizer with 4:06 remaining in the period when David Clarkson jammed at the puck in a goalmouth scramble. Penguins defenseman Mark Eaton, having been knocked to the ice, kicked the puck clear as it hovered on the goal line.
"You see the puck go in and you're pretty excited going back to the bench," Clarkson said. "When they review it, you never know. It obviously didn't go in because they didn't count it. I've got to bear down there a little more and get a bit more on it."
The Devils outshot the Penguins 12-5 in a scoreless first period in which both teams had outstanding chances in the final seconds. The Devils tested Fleury with a hard shot by Zach Parise and the rebound by Langenbrunner. The Penguins quickly shifted to the attack, with Clemmensen turning aside former Devil Petr Sykora.
|While Matt Cooke upends David Clarkson, Marc-Andre Fleury takes care of the puck coming his way. (AP)|
|Pittsburgh (19-12-4) «||0||1||0||1|
|New Jersey (19-11-3)||0||0||0||0|
Save Pct.: 1.000
Save Pct.: .944
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|12:51||Ruslan Fedotenko (9), Snap Shot. Assist: Malkin, Sykora|
|06:33||Parise, 2 min, Goaltender Interference|
|10:12||Cooke, 10 min, Misconduct|
|10:12||Mottau, 2 min, Tripping|
|03:33||Eaton, 2 min, Hooking|
|14:09||Whitney, 2 min, Hooking|
|15:54||Gionta, 2 min, Tripping|
|19:14||Cooke, 2 min, Tripping|
|05:06||Martin, 2 min, Interference|
|09:37||Langenbrunner, 2 min, Tripping|
|12:44||Sykora, 2 min, Hooking|
|18:56||Whitney, 2 min, Broken Stick|
|19:06||Gionta, 2 min, Slashing|
|Shots On Goal|
|Power Play Conversions|
|Attendance - 16921|
|Referees - Bill McCreary, Ian Walsh|
|Linesmen - Mark Pare, Tony Sericolo|