The New Jersey Devils weren’t able to generate much offense and have dropped their last two games, with one more to go before their week off. After the 4-1 defeat at Nassau Coliseum, the Devils now own an 18-22-7 record.
The first period doomed the Devils, where the Islanders reeled off three first-period goals. Two of them were pretty deflections, and the third being a Jordan Eberle power play goal. The Eberle goal is the only one of the three that Blackwood may have wanted back (video below).
— Hockey Daily 365 (@HockeyDaily365) January 18, 2019
Unfortunately, the Devils were once again unable to come back from an early deficit. A shot from the point through traffic by Andy Greene in the third period, followed by an Anders Lee empty-net tally were the only scores after the three-goal first period by the Islanders. Islanders goaltender Robin Lehner made 16 saves and was credited with the win. Mackenzie Blackwood made 23 saves and was on the losing side of things.
- After a shaky first period, Blackwood responded with a strong following two periods. The Islanders were on the attack most of the game, and Blackwood stood tall, especially in the second period, where the Islanders generated 11 scoring chances, each of which he saved. Overall, an encouraging bounce-back performance for Blackwood.
- The Devils offensive performance was brutal. The second period only saw them generate four shots, and they were only able to generate 17 scoring chances for the game. Against a team that thrives on goaltending, generating less than 10 shots in each period will not get the job done.
- There weren’t many bright spots, but Blake Coleman excelled once again. He led all Devils with a Corsi For% of 56.52 and a scoring chances for% of 63.64. He also anchored the Devils most productive line. Coleman, as always, played a valuable role on the penalty kill, as the unit was 2 for 2 when he was on it. Overall Blake Coleman continues being one of the Devils best forwards.
- The defensive pairing of Will Butcher and Sami Vatanen was disappointing. The Devils second pairing combined for a shot attempt differential of +9/-32. The fact that they faced the Islanders’ first and second lines all game didn’t help. However, two of the Devils more reliable defenseman need to be better.
- The Devils first line was miserable last night. The trio of Johansson, Hischier, and Bratt was outshot 3-22 at even strength. It was very surprising to see coach John Hynes keep them together for so long. He may want to explore other options for the next game against Anaheim.
Next Devils Game: January 19th, 2019 @ 1:00 PM vs. Anaheim