Brodeur sets record with 552nd win, moves past Roy

Wed Mar 18, 2009 12:03am EDT
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By Larry Fine

NEWARK, New Jersey (Reuters) - Martin Brodeur set the NHL record for most career victories and staked his claim to the title of greatest netminder to play the game as the New Jersey Devils beat the Chicago Blackhawks 3-2 on Tuesday.

It was the 36-year-old's 552nd career win and snapped a tie on the all-time list with his boyhood idol Patrick Roy, who played for Brodeur's hometown Montreal Canadiens.

Brodeur, in winning for the eighth time in nine games since returning to the ice after missing 50 contests because of an elbow injury, turned away 30 of 32 shots to the delight of a sold-out home crowd of 17,625.

After a last-second save to end the game, Brodeur cut off the net as a memento and skated around the rink to take in the adulation from the cheering crowd.

"I'm happy it's done and over with," a relieved Brodeur told reporters. "The ovation from the crowd and me skating around the rink ... it was a great moment for me."

Devils coach Brent Sutter summed up a rousing night that felt more like a Stanley Cup playoff joust than a regular-season game.

"A record like this speaks for itself. The most wins of all time by any goaltender who ever played the game.

"It's special. There was so much emotion in the building."   Continued...

<p>New Jersey Devils goalie Martin Brodeur celebrates after beating the Chicago Blackhawks for his 552nd career victory at their NHL game in Newark, New Jersey, March 17, 2009. REUTERS/Gary Hershorn</p>