[Ed. note -- Front Page'd]
While most of our BC hockey focus has fallen on the east side of the Hudson as of late, there were a few former Eagles playing on the west side of the river tonight. Though Brian Gionta, Scott Clemmensen, and Mike Mottau have long since departed the Devils, two former Eagles figured prominently into Tuesday's Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals between New Jersey and Florida.
Firstly, the Devils' Stephen Gionta - younger brother of both the BC all-time and Devils' single-season goals record holder - scored New Jersey's second goal of the night, just 3:27 into the game. The younger Gionta made his NHL debut with 12 scoreless games in the 2010-11 NHL season, and spent the past year - his sixth pro season - serving as captain of the AHL's Albany Devils. He was surprisingly recalled for the NHL Devils' season finale, scoring his first NHL goal - the game winner - against Ottawa.
Gionta's goal in Game 3 - the second of three Devils goals scored in the game's first 6:16 - helped chase Florida goaltender Jose Theodore from the pipes. He was replaced by Scott Clemmensen - the long-time former Devils back-up goalie - who played in four Frozen Fours and three National Championship games in his four years on The Heights.
Not only did Clemmensen stop all 19 shots he saw from the Devils over the final 53:44, he also recorded the secondary assist on the Panthers' first goal, as they battled back to secure a 4-3 victory and a 2-1 series lead. The win might have been particularly satisfying for Clemmensen, who clashed with Devils' coach Peter DeBoer during their two years together with the Panthers.
Aside from Gionta and Clemmensen, the game featured one additional former Eagle. Devils defenseman and former BC captain Peter Harrold - who like Gionta spent much of the season in Albany with former Eagle Joe Whitney - finished with no points, a minus one, and one hit in 15:03 of ice time.