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Game Preview – Game 25: Your New Jersey Devils @ Winnipeg Jets

New Jersey Devils vs Winnipeg Jets

New Jersey Devils
(12-11-1, 25 points) @ Winnipeg Jets (10-11-4, 24 points)
7:00 PM EST
TV: MSG Plus 
Radio: WFAN 660 AM


Tonight is the second of four times that the Devils and Jets will meet this season. They last played on November 5, which saw the Devils win 3-2 in overtime.

First Period Defense:

For the second time in two games, the New Jersey Devils allowed the opposition to score three goals in the first period. First on Wednesday night, the Devils allowed three goals to the Avalanche and found themselves down 3-0 at the end of the first period. Last night, the Devils gave up three goals once again in the first period, this time to the Minnesota Wild.

Despite giving up three goals in the first period, the Devils looked like a better team against the Wild then they did against Colorado. They outshot the Wild 31-16 in the game. Zach Parise said he thought the team deserved better than they got due to their play being better than when they got slaughtered by the Avalanche.

It was also a night that backups had to save their teams. Johan Hedberg came in for the Devils just 8:17 into the game when starter Martin Brodeur gave up three goals on four shots. Josh Harding had to come in for the Wild to replace Nicklas Backstrom who left the game after one period with a lower body injury.

Johan Hedberg is expected to get the start tonight in Winnipeg.

Last time the Devils were in Winnipeg:

Date: Dec. 29, 1995
Site: Winnipeg Arena
Score: Jets, 5, Devils 3
Goals: NJ—Petr Sykora 2, Bill Guerin. WPG—Mike Eastwood, Dave Manson, Ed Olczyk, Teemu Selanne, Keith Tkachuk.
Assists: NJ—Guerin 2, Steve Thomas 2, Sykora, Kevin Dean. WPG—Selanne 2, Tkachuk 2, Manson, Olczyk, Darrin Shannon.
Goaltenders: NJ—Martin Brodeur (33 saves, 37 shots—1 ENG). WPG—Tim Cheveldae (31 saves, 34 shots)

Devils’ lineup:

Forwards: Neal Broten, Bob Carpenter, Bill Guerin, Bobby Holik, John MacLean, Randy McKay, Mike Peluso, Stephane Richer, Brian Rolston, *Petr Sykora, Steve Thomas, Valeri Zelepukin.

Defensemen: Shawn Chambers, Ken Daneyko, Kevin Dean, Scott Niedermayer, Jason Smith, Scott Stevens.

Goaltender: *Martin Brodeur.

*Current Devils

(Courtesy of Tom Gulitti of The Record)

Projected Devils Lineup:

Parise – Henrique – Kovalchuk
Sykora – Elias – Zubrus

Tedenby – Carter – Clarkson
Boulton – Sestito – Janssen

Greene – Larsson
Talinder – Fayne
Volchenkov – Salvador



Jets Coming Off a Win against….Themselves:

The Winnipeg Jets are currently playing in the Eastern Conference this season, which means they only got one home game against the Phoenix Coyotes, who were the Jets until they moved to Phoenix in 1996. Thursday night, the Jets hosted the Coyotes before a sold out MTS Centre. The crowd for the game was really into it, especially when Bryan Little scored a goal 6:53 into the game which eventually was the game winner.

The crowd also gave Coyotes’ captain Shane Doan a reasonable applause as he is the only player on the Coyotes currently who had donned a Jets jersey before the move.

Projected Jets Lineup:

Ladd – Burmistrov – Wellwood
Kane – Little – Wheeler
Klingberg – Stapleton – Jaffray
Glass – Slater – Thorburn

Byfuglien – Stuart
Oduya – Bogosian
Kulda – Flood


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Best to Wear #12 – Bill Guerin

Bill GuerinNUMBER: 12
HEIGHT: 6′ 2″
POSITION: Right wing
BORN: November 9, 1970

In one of the more exciting Best to Wear, the Devils Army voted Bill Guerin as the Best to Wear #12 in Devils history.

While I was growing up, Guerin, who was drafted fifth overall in the 1989 NHL Entry Draft, was one of my favorite players. Guerin offered speed, size, offense and defense; he was an all-around player. He played with the Devils from the 91-92 season until the 97-98 season. He was traded, along with Valeri Zelepukin, to Edmonton. Who did the Devils get in return? Jason Arnott.

Guerin, a two time Stanley Cup champion, was always called a leader on every team that he played for in his storied career. He was only captain of one team, the New York Islanders.

Guerin announced his retirement on December 6, 2010 after 17 seasons in the NHL. When he retired, Guerin ranked seventh all-time in goals scored by an American with 429 goals.

Career Stats with the New Jersey Devils
380 108 106 214 40 469 22 0 25 863 12.5%

Here is one of my favorite Bill Guerin moments:

I apologize to some of you who were upset that I did not include Nick Palmieri in Best to Wear #12. Since I started the polls before the season started, I missed Larsson at #5, so I figured I wouldn’t include players if it’s their first year wearing the number. Palmieri will be listed for #32.


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