Kovalchuk Helps Streaking Devils Power Past Panthers

Ilya Kovalchuk had a goal and two assists, Jason Arnott scored twice and the resurgent New Jersey Devils extended their winning streak to four with a 5-2 victory over the Florida Panthers on Sunday.

Brian Rolston and Patrik Elias also scored for the Devils, who have picked up points in seven straight games (6-0-1). Their only blip during the surge was a 3-2 overtime loss at Florida on Jan. 15. Martin Brodeur made 24 saves.

The Devils are trying to climb out of a huge hole. They fell to the bottom of the NHL standings with a 10-29-2 record before the hot streak, a slide that cost coach John MacLean his job just before Christmas.

With Jacques Lemaire back behind the bench, New Jersey has turned it around and has recent wins over the Tampa Bay Lightning, Philadelphia Flyers and Pittsburgh Penguins — all Eastern Conference powers.

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