Today’s game will feature the New Jersey Devils, who currently own a 20-26-8 record, which puts them last in the Metropolitan Division, and the Carolina Hurricanes, who own a 28-21-6 record, which puts them fifth in the Metropolitan Division.
The Devils are coming off the front end of a back-to-back loss to the Minnesota Wild. In this game, they only generated 18 shots on goal and are 2-6-1 in their last nine games and 4-9-1 in their last 14 games. Of the last 14 games, they’ve only tallied more than three goals twice. To say the least, scoring has been hard to come by. As coach John Hynes indicated yesterday, Keith Kinkaid is in net. It remains to be seen what other lineup changes will be made.
The Carolina Hurricanes are the polar opposite of the Devils. They have won their past three games and are 6-1-1 over their last eight games. Over this stretch, five of the six wins have come on the road. It’ll be interesting to see who the Hurricanes go with in between the pipes, as this will be a front end of a back-to-back for them. Each has been stellar over this recent stretch, so whoever is in net expect a strong showing.
Tonight’s game will be at Prudential Center and is scheduled to start at 3:00 PM.
Projected Devils Lines
Projected Hurricanes Lines
De Haan/Van Riemsdyk
What/Who to Watch
- Forward Nino Niederreiter has been a great addition to the Hurricanes team. Over his nine games in a Hurricanes sweater, he’s tallied six goals. Playing on the top line with the likes of Sebastian Aho and Justin Williams so do not expect this stellar trend to end.
- Goaltender Keith Kinkaid will make his first start since Tuesday when he gave up five goals on only 25 shots. His save percentage is down to a .896, which marks the lowest of his career. Many regard Kinkaid as a trade candidate come the Feb. 25 deadline. The better Kinkaid plays, the better the return may be in a trade.
- The Hurricanes may be in the thick of the playoff race, but their special teams have not been all that impressive this season. They currently rank 27thon the power play and 14thon the penalty kill. The Devils power play has been a little better of late so look for them to take advantage of the Hurricanes league average penalty kill.
- The Hurricanes own the best Corsi For percent (CF%) in the NHL at a rating of 55.40 percent. The Devils, conversely, own the 26th best CF%. This means expect for Kinkaid to be busy all game, and he will have to be good for the Devils to have a shot at the upset.
Tonight’s game can be seen on MSG at 3:00 PM.