The Devils spent 81 games of the 2011-12 NHL season without a fourth line. They’d try a seventh defenseman, the odd forward out, or just double shift Ilya Kovalchuk on it.
They found their fourth line with one game left in the regular season, and it continues to pay dividends into the Finals, as Ryan Carter’s tip-in goal tied Game 2 at 1-1 at 2:59 of the third.
Carter deflected a Marek Zidlicky shot from the point — essentially, succeeding on the Devils strategy all night — and beat Jonathan Quick after a good Kings start to the period.
It’s now even, with New Jersey decidedly grabbing the momentum. The crowd is as loud as it’s been here at Prudential Center through the first two games.