Albany alums lead parent Devils to win

Plenty of familiar faces were on the ice at the Times Union Center in Albany on Wednesday night as the New Jersey Devils battled the New York Rangers in a National Hockey League preseason tilt.

The Devils won the game 2-1 in overtime thanks to the help of some former AHL standouts. Off the ice, 9,420 fans made their way to the home of the Albany Devils, setting a venue record for high attendance at an NHL preseason game.

As the first period progressed, the black curtains that hang over the upper-bowl end zone started to lift, making way for more fans.

It had been nine years since the last major-league preseason game was held in the Capital Region and the fans showed up. The previous record was 9,379 for a Boston Bruins and New York Islanders game in 1992.

Patrik Elias, who played in the AHL for Albany between 1995-98, netted the game-winning goal 45 seconds into overtime. The goal was set up by another former Albany All-Star Zach Parise, who played in the Capital District during the 2004-05 season.

Another Albany throwback, Petr Sykora (1995-98), began the scoring with a wrist shot at 11:34 of the first. The assists went to rookie Adam Larsson and Eric Boulton.

The Rangers’ Dale Weise, with the help of Artem Anisimov, sent the game into overtime with a tally at 4:21 of the third.

Of the seven players who earned a point in the game only one – Larsson – has never played a game in the AHL.

The next hockey game at the Times Union Center will be opening night for the Albany Devils when the Springfield Falcons arrive on Saturday, Oct. 8 for a 7 p.m. contest.