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Associated Press
10/14/2006 11:19:39 PM

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) - Brian Gionta again came up big late in the game for the New Jersey Devils.

Gionta broke a tie early in the third period and Martin Brodeur made 25 saves to lead the Devils to a 3-2 victory over the Philadelphia Flyers on Saturday night.

Late-game heroics have become the norm for the diminutive forward. He scored all the goals as the Devils overcame a three-goal, third-period deficit Thursday night in a 7-6 shootout victory over Toronto.

"It's just one of those things," Gionta said. "I just try to get to the net when it counts. We have to create traffic and try to get some tips and rebounds."

Devils coach Claude Julien has come to admire Gionta's persistence around the net.

"This guy really gets his nose dirty in the front of the net," Julien said. "He's so good at picking up pucks with his stick. They have been timely goals, important goals."

Gionta put the Devils ahead at 3:33 of the final period. Positioned at the top of the crease, Gionta deflected Rafalski's shot between the pads of Antero Nittymaki.

Zach Parise and Jamie Langenbrunner also scored for the Devils and Brian Rafalski had three assists.

It was a solid night for Brodeur who rebounded with a strong game after surrendering five second-period goals against the Maple Leafs.

Mike Knuble scored twice for the Flyers.

The teams exchanged power-play goals in the first period.

New Jersey scored first at 9:08 when Parise rifled a shot from the right circle past Nittymaki.

Philadelphia countered at 11:14 as Knuble cut to the net and took a feed from Peter Forsberg to beat Brodeur. The power-play tally was a rare development for the Flyers who were 3-for-32 with the man advantage through the first four games.

Both teams added a goal in the second period.

Knuble scored again to give the Flyers a 2-1 lead at 1:23 as he knocked in Goeff Sanderson's pass through the crease.

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