Newark, NJ (Sports Network) - Patrik Elias scored one of New Jersey's four second-period goals, as the Devils kept their playoff hopes alive with a 6-2 beatdown of the league-worst Florida Panthers on Saturday afternoon at Prudential Center.
Elias finished with two tallies and Martin Brodeur needed to make only 11 saves for the Devils, who trail the New York Rangers by six points for the eighth spot in the Eastern Conference. The Rangers host the Devils on Sunday.
Travis Zajac had two assists for New Jersey, which snapped a team record-tying 10-game losing streak with Thursday's 3-0 triumph in Philadelphia. The slide began after the last time the club won consecutive games on March 21-23.
Star forward Ilya Kovalchuk suffered a right shoulder injury in the Devils' March 23 home victory against these same Panthers and finally returned to the lineup Saturday after an 11-game absence.
Jacob Markstrom stopped 27 shots in Florida's fifth straight loss, during which the club has surrendered 27 goals.