NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — Sam Reinhart scored twice and Sergei Bobrovsky made 29 saves as the Florida Panthers beat New Jersey 4-2 Saturday night, handing the first-place Devils their fifth straight loss.
Gustav Forsling and Carter Verhaege scored, while Aaron Ekblad added two assists for Florida. Florida beat New Jersey five times in six meetings. It improved its record to 4-1-0 in its last five visits at Prudential Center. Bobrovsky made his sixth consecutive appearance and scored his 343rd career triumph. His record against the Devils is 18-5-1.
Erik Haula scored a goal and assisted John Marino. The Devils are currently 0-4-1. Akira Schmid had 25 saves.
Reinhart gave the Panthers an early lead of 1-0 with a power-play goal at 8.54 in the first period. This was the end of a passing sequence that included Aleksander Barkov, Ekblad and others.
With his fifth goal of this season, Forsling made it 2 at 7:49 in the second.
Marino put the Devils on the board at 8:33 in the middle period. For this third, he fired a long goal past Bobrovsky. Jack Hughes assisted on the play, increasing his team’s lead to 36 points (16 goals and 20 assists).
Reinhart restored the margin to two goals with 41 seconds left in the second. He tipped a shot from Ekblad past Schmid and scored his 11th goal for the season.
Haula pulled the Devils to 3-2 with 3 1/2 minutes remaining in the third with his second goal of the season, but Verhaeghe’s empty-netter — for his team-leading 16th goal — with 1:11 left sealed the Panthers’ win.
New Jersey has totaled just four goals in its last three games, all defeats at home — including 2-1 to Philadelphia on Thursday and 4-1 to Dallas on Tuesday. Prior to that, the Devils lost 4-3 at overtime to New York Rangers and started their losing streak by falling to 6-4 at home last Friday night. After dropping their first two games of this season, the Devils had won 21 of 24, before they lost their current skid.
New Jersey’s hold on first place in the Metropolitan Division was reduced to two points following Carolina’s overtime win over Dallas on Saturday.
Dougie Hamilton, Devils defenseman, played in his 700th career match.
On Monday night, Panthers will be in Boston.
Carolina Devils on Tuesday Night
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