Just when we all thought the New Hersey Devils turned a corner after the Taylor Hall trade, they’ve lost two in a row. Friday’s loss wasn’t a surprise, considering the Washington Capitals are the top team in the Metropolitan Division. Last night saw the Devils lose to a lowly Columbus Blue Jackets team that resides in the division basement just like themselves.
Giles Senn’s First NHL Start
Even with the loss, Saturday’s game was of note for being Giles Senn’s first NHL start. The Binghamton goaltender was awarded the opportunity after an injury put Louis Domingue on the IR. That and the fact the Devils are willing to recall any goaltender except $6 million dollar man Cory Schneider.
The night started off shaky for Senn, who gave up a goal in the game’s opening minute. Senn eventually stabilized and seemed to go shot for shot with Columbus. Even in a losing effort, that’s a moral victory for the young netminder who needs to gain confidence. Senn finished the night with a .921 save percentage and 3.42 goals against average. That goals against average is a bit scary, but the save percentage is what matters most.
Not a single goal the entire game was scored on special teams. The Devils were the recipients of many questionable calls, including an unsportsmanlike penalty against Kyle Palmieri that resulted in a double minor. Jesper Bratt was also called for embellishment, negating a potential New Jersey man advantage.
On the power play, Columbus went 0 for 5. New Jersey went 0 for 3. The Devils only goal of the game, off the stick of Will Butcher, came during 4 on 4 play.
Bold Strategy, Cotton
One of the more interesting decisions of the game came late in the third period. With the Devils down 3-1, Nasreddine decided to pull Senn for the extra attacker. Over three minutes were left in the game.
That bold move resulted in an empty-net goal for Columbus, giving the Blue Jackets a 4-1 advantage. Once again Senn was pulled. Predictable another empty-net goal was scored for the final score of 5-1. Granted the game was out of New Jersey’s hands at that point, but those two empty-net goals added insult to injury.