The New Jersey Devils were not able to hold onto a two-goal lead and dropped last night’s game against the New York Rangers 4-2. This moves the Devils to a season-low 25-35-9, and 0-3-0 against their cross-river rivals.
The first period was certainly the Devils’ best, as they were able to tally two late goals courtesy of a Damon Severson blast and a Blake Coleman redirection on the power play. But the last two periods were a much different story. The Rangers were able to tally a late second-period goal after dominating pressure. Then in the third period, they tallied three more goals, the last being an empty-netter.
Even though goaltender Cory Schneider played particularly well – making 37 saves on 40 shots – he was credited with the loss. Goaltender Henrick Lundqvist made 22 saves and was credited with the win. Also, it’s worth noting Michael McLeod tallied his first career point thanks to an assist on the Devils first goal. Forward Travis Zajac also racked up his 500thcareer point, becoming the fourth player in Devils history to do so.
- Over the Devils recent six-game losing streak, goals have been hard to come by. This is not all that surprising given the forward group they have been rolling out. This trend certainly continued versus the Rangers, as the Devils lacked high-quality scoring chances all game. Above is a heat map showing even strength scoring attempts for each team. And as you can see, the Devils didn’t really generate any chances in and around the net. If they wish to break this lack of scoring, they must get better quality chances.
- Forward Travis Zajac may have tallied his 500th career point, but he struggled mightily at 5-on-5. He was +1/-16 in shot attempts which translates to a team-low 5.88 Corsi For % (CF%). Also, when he was on the ice the Devils only created one scoring chance, while the opponents were able to generate six. To say the least, Zajac had one of his worst games of the season.
- Defenseman Damon Severson played a team-high 23:45 and once again showed why he is the Devils best all-around defenseman. At 5-on-5, he led Devils defenseman with a CF% of 44.44% and anchored a Devils penalty kill which went 5/5. In all the bad that has occurred for the Devils this season, it is great to see Severson excelling.
- As mentioned above, even though Cory Schneider took the loss, he once again played well. He was able to post a .925 save percentage while facing 13 high-danger scoring chances. This marks the sixth time in his last eight appearances where Schneider has put together a .900 or higher save percentage. It has been great seeing Schneider excel once again.
Next Devils Game: March 12th, 2019 @ 9:00 PM in Calgary