Pregame: New Jersey Devils Hope To Rebound Over Lowly Detroit Red Wings

Two of the league’s worse face off tonight in New Jersey. (Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports)

It looked like the New Jersey Devils had something going for them. Granted, they had a few overtime losses that should have been wins, but the point-streak they brought into Tuesday night’s game was encouraging. Instead, the Florida Panthers once again had to the deal the Devils a heartbreaking loss on home ice.

After a few days off, the lowly Devils will face off against the even more lowly Detroit Red Wings. Don’t expect a 1995 Stanley Cup rematch as the Red Wings are a rebuilding shell of their former self. At 14-40-4 they are the NHL’s worst team, and by a wide margin.

Players To Watch

Kyle Palmieri: Of course, the Devils’ best sniper is going to be one to watch. This year’s all-star selection has been heating up recently. Palmieri is the teams’ leader in points and has four goals in his last five games. In the Devils’ last matchup with Detroit, he had a goal as well.

Damon Severson has a seven-game point streak entering tonight’s game. (Photo by: Getty Images)

Damon Severson: The ‘fighter of the night-man’ has been getting a lot of criticism for his defensive mistakes, but he has silently put together a lengthy point-streak. As of Tuesday’s matchup, Severson find himself on a seven game streak. His 16th assist of the season came courtesy of Jack Hughes’ first period goal. This point streak has been good for not only the Devils, but for Severson as well.

Dylan Larkin: While the Red Wings haven’t had much success, Larkin has consistently been their best player. He enters Thursday with 40 points in 58 games, including three in his last five. He’s destined to be the face of the rebuild until — what many Red Wings’ fans hope — Alexis Lafreniere comes along.

Keys To Victory

Goaltending: Louis Domingue let in a plethora of questionable goals in Tuesday’s loss. So many so that the Prudential Center crowd starting chanting, “We want Blackwood.” The Devils should start Blackwood on Thursday, and this seems like the case as he was in net for the morning skate.

Detroit has an interesting goaltending tandem. While heir apparent number one Johnathan Bernier has put together respectable numbers, Jimmy Howard is an entirely different story. The longtime Detroit netminder, and one time Olympian sports a record of 2-21-0. If Howard starts, it seems like almost a guaranteed win.

Home Ice Advantage: The Devils aren’t good. The Red Wings aren’t good. The Red Wings are even worse away from Little Caesars Arena. This is evident by only having five road wins this year. Don’t tell me having the game at Prudential Center won’t tip the ice at least a little bit in New Jersey’s favor.

Projected Lineups

Detroit Red Wings

Forwards

Helm/Larkin/Mantha

Bertuzzi/Athanasiou/Glendenning

Nielsen/Filpula/Perlini

Abdelkader/Ehn/Erne

Defenseman

Hronek/Green

Nemeth/Biega

Daley/Lindstrom

Goalies

Bernie

Howard

New Jersey Devils

Check back on our social media pages for lineup chnges, especially in regards to Nico Hischier’s possible insertion into the lineup.

Where To Watch

Tonight’s game can be seen on MSG+ and is scheduled for a 7:00 PM puck drop. If you can’t find yourself near a television, you can always check our Devils Army Blog social media channels for game updates.

Prediction

If there was ever a team for the Devils to bounce back against, it’s against Detroit. Don’t expect an offensive battle for the ages, for some reason I think this will be a low scoring affair. Still, I think the Devils will come out with a 3-1 victory.

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