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Game 40: Boston Bruins at New Jersey Devils

New Jersey Devils vs Boston Bruins

Game Time:  7:30 PM
TV: NBCSN
Radio: 970 AM

Match-Up

The New Jersey Devils (15-14-10) will play host to the Boston Bruins (25-9-4) tonight for third and final meeting of the season. This is the second game between these teams in the last week. Last Thursday, the Devils shipped up to Boston in a game that saw the Devils throw everything but the kitchen sink at Tuukka Rask, but he stopped all 40 shots. Jaromir Jagr would score in his debut as a Bruin, and the Devils would fall 1-0. These are two teams headed in different directions, as Boston is fighting to win the Northeast Division, and New Jersey is fighting to keep its playoffs hopes alive.

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Game Preview – Game 35: Your New Jersey Devils @ Carolina Hurricanes

New Jersey Devils vs Carolina Hurricanes

New Jersey Devils (19-14-1, 39 points) vs Carolina Hurricanes (11-19-6, 28 points)

7:00 PM EST
TV: MSG+
Radio: WFAN 660 AM

Matchup:

Tonight will be the third of four matchups between the Devils and the Hurricanes this season. The Devils won both games played at Prudential Center this season on October 10 and November 8, both of which were decided in the third period.

Devils Vs Washington Recap:

Everything looked to be going the New Jersey Devils way in their last game against the Capitals on Friday, that is until the third period.

After a scoreless first period, the Devils had what I believe is one of their best second periods all season. Great constant pressure in the offensive zone eventually led the Devils to scoring three unanswered goals from Ilya Kovalchuk, Alexander Urbom, and Adam Henrique. The offensive play combined with Martin Brodeur’s goaltending, the odds seemed to be in the Devils favor… until the third period.

The three-nothing lead has always been considered the worst lead in hockey. This proved to be true once again as the Capitals scored three unanswered goals of their own forcing the game to overtime.

Once overtime had come in gone, it was time for a penalty shot shootout which saw Ilya Kovalchuk and Patrik Elias score on their attempts, and saw Martin Brodeur, not only stop Nicklas Backstrom, but ROB Alex Ovechkin for the win.

The win gave the Devils their 38th and 39th points of the season, which has them tied with the Ottawa Senators for seventh in the Eastern Conference.

Last Game Against Carolina:

CAR (L) @ NJD (W)
Final Score: 3-2

In their last game against the Hurricanes, the New Jersey Devils were without star forward Ilya Kovalchuk. They relied on offense of the line of Sykora-Elias-Zubrus which combined for two goals and three assists in the contest.

Adam Henrique had the eventual game winner as he successfully completed a wrap around which slid the puck under the pad of Hurricanes’ goaltender Arturs Irbe, I mean Cam Ward.

Henrique’s game winner was his second in as many games. “The kid’s got a knack for big goals,” coach Peter DeBoer said of Henrique who is now second in overall rookie scoring with 9 goals, 17 assists.

Projected Devils Lineup:

Parise (C) – Henrique – Kovalchuk (A)
Sykora – Elias (A) – Zubrus

Tedenby – Zajac – Clarkson
Sestito – Carter – Janssen

Salvador – Fayne
Volchenkov – Foster
Taormina – Urbom

Hedberg
Brodeur

*Note: Adam Larsson is not injured and is on his way back from Sweden after attending funeral services for his grandmother.
——————–
The Latest on the Carolina Hurricanes:

The season so far hasn’t been very kind to the Carolina Hurricanes, who currently find themselves last in the Eastern Conference Standings.

A coaching change has already been made this season for the Hurricanes as they have brought former Devil Kirk Muller on to be the head coach, and Muller has brought former Devils player and coach, John MacLean, to serve as one of the assistant coaches.

The Hurricanes are coming off of a win in their last game on Friday night as they defeated the Senators 2-1 in overtime, thanks to a goal from Tuomo Ruutu. It was the first time this season that the Hurricanes won a game that needed extra time to be decided. They currently have six overtime losses.

Cam Ward stopped 22 of 23 shots and is expected to make the start tonight at the RBC Center against the Devils.

Projected Hurricanes Lineup:

Tlusty – Staal (C) – Dwyer
Ponikarovsky – Jokinen – Ruutu
Bowman – Sutter (A) – LaRose
Nodl – Brent – Stewart

Gleason (A) – McBain
Spacek – Harrison
Joslin – Allen

Ward
Peters

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Game Preview – Game 34: Washington Capitals @ Your New Jersey Devils!

New Jersey Devils vs Washington Capitals

Washington Capitals (17-14-1, 35 points)  vs New Jersey Devils (18-14-1, 37 points)
7:00 PM EST
TV: MSG+
Radio: WFAN 660 AM

Matchup:

Tonight will be the third of four matchups between the Devils and the Capitals. Most recently, they split a home-and-home on November 11 and 12, which saw the Capitals collect the win in New Jersey, and the Devils return the favor in Washington.

Devils Picking Up Play:

Despite being only four games over .500, the New Jersey Devils’ play recently has been picking up. Before their 4-1 loss Tuesday against division rivals, the New York Rangers, the Devils were on a season-high four game winning streak.

Looking at the standings, the Devils currently sit fourth in the Atlantic Division, but are still within striking distance of the teams above them. Currently the Devils are five points behind the Penguins, seven behind the Rangers, and nine behind the Flyers.  Not only are they within striking distance of division teams, but the Devils currently sit eighth in the Eastern Conference standings. A win tonight, could put them up as high as sixth. Also, their opponents tonight , the Washington Capitals, are only two points behind the Devils for eighth. A win tonight is key for both teams.

Tonight’s game at Prudential Center will be an important one for the Devils as they look to get back on the winning side of the standings. Despite having only won half of the games on their home ice, the Devils still have the best penalty kill in the league. And while their powerplay is good enough for 27th out of 30, the Devils might catch a break due to the Capitals having collected the least amount of points, in the East, while on the road.

Last Game Against Washington:

NJD @ WSH
Final Score: 3-2 SO

The Devils found themselves down 2-0 to end the first period, but goals from Petr Sykora and Ryan Carter tied the game up shortly before the end of the second period.

After a scoreless third period and overtime, the game went into a shootout. Zach Parise scored in the first round for the Devils, but the next skater for the Capitals was Alexander Ovechkin who got one past Johan Hedberg. The shootout remained tied until the fourth round when David Clarkson, of all people, scored the game winner.

Projected Devils Lineup:

Parise (C) – Henrique – Kovalchuk (A)
Sykora – Elias (A) – Zubrus

Tedenby – Zajac – Clarkson
Sestito – Carter – Janssen

Salvador – Foster
Volchenkov – Urbom
Taormina – Fayne

Brodeur
Hedberg

*Note: Adam Larsson has been granted permission to return to Sweden to attend his grandmother’s funeral. He is expected to miss tonight’s game as well as Monday’s game against Carolina.*
——————–
The Latest on the Washington Capitals:

It’s hard to imagine that the Capitals have gone 10-14-1 since they started the season at 7-0-0. A lot has changed since than including a coaching change. After firing Bruce Boudreau, the Capitals now have Dale Hunter behind the bench calling the shots.

In their last game, on Tuesday, the Capitals defeated the Nashville  Predators by a score of 4-1. After this win, the Capitals have won four out of their last six proving that the Capitals team looks to have their feet back under them. The bright side of this victory was that the Capitals big-three, Ovechkin, Backstrom, and Semin all had a goal in the game. Surprisingly, this was the first time this had happened since October 2010.

Injury wise, the Capitals are still missing Mike Green, who is still recovering from a groin injury suffered six weeks ago. Besides him, no impact players are missing from their lineup.

Also, it is being reported that the Capitals will be wearing their third jersey tonight at Prudential Center. These are the jerseys that the Capitals wore during the Winter Classic last season.

Projected Capitals Lineup: 

Ovechkin (C) – Laich – Brouwer
Johansson – Backstrom (A) – Semin
Chimera – Halpern – Ward
Hendricks – Perrault – Knuble (A)

Alzner – Carlson
Schultz – Wideman
Hamrlik – Orlov

Neuvirth
Vokoun

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Game Preview – Game 15: Your New Jersey Devils @ Alex Ovechkin

New Jersey Devils vs Washington Capitals


New Jersey Devils 
(7-6-1, 15 points) @ Washington Capitals (10-4-0, 20 points)
7:00 PM EST
TV: MSG Plus, NHL Network-US (subject to local blackouts)
Radio: WFAN 660 AM

Matchup:

Tonight is the second of a home-and-home series between the two clubs. Last night the Capitals beat the Devils 3-1 at Prudential Center. This will be the second of four meetings between the two teams.

Happy Birthday Adam Larsson:

Today, the Devils’ first round draft pick celebrates his 19th birthday.

Last night, Larsson got an early birthday gift as he scored his first career NHL goal to give the Devils a 1-0 lead in the first period. The Devils looked to have the momentum as they were pouring on great scoring chances and pressure.

However, the game slipped away as the Capitals tied it late in the second period and scored two goals in the third to give them the 3-1 win.

Devils Strong PK:

In their first eight home games of the year, the New Jersey Devils have not allowed a single powerplay goal. The team has been down a man 30 times while playing at Prudential Center.

Meanwhile on the road, the Devils are 18-22 (81.8%) on the PK.

Overall the Devils are second in the league with a 92.3% PK.

Against the Capitals:

All-time the Devils are 67-76-8-1 against the Capitals, and are 27-45-4-0 when playing in Washington.

Patrik Elias has the most points as a Devil, as an active player, against the Capitals with 46 points (18 goals, 28 assists) in 49 games played.

Kirk Muller has the most points of any Devil player against the Capitals with 51 points (20 goals, 31 assists).

Johan Hedberg is 7-4-2 in his career against the Capitals with one shutout and a 2.85 GAA.

Projected Devils Lineup:

Parise – Henrique – Palmieri
Sykora – Elias – Zubrus

Tedenby – Carter – Clarkson
Zharkov – Mills – Janssen

Greene – Larsson
Tallinder – Fayne
Volchenkov – Salvador

Hedberg
Brodeur

——————–

Boudreau Close to Milestone:

After last night’s win against the Devils, Capitals coach Bruce Boudreau is sitting at 199 career wins. His current coaching record is 199-83-39. With an impressive record like that, Boudreau has a .681 career points percentage which is tied for the best in NHL history for a coach with at least 250 games of experience. 

Capitals Detour on Highway to Hell:

The Washington Capitals are 5-1-0 in their last six games against the Devils. The one loss came from a 5-0 Devils win last season. Despite that 5-0 win for the Devils, the Capitals have outscored the Devils 21-10 in that span. The Capitals believe they have the Devils’ number as they have collected the most wins and points over the Devils than any other franchise.

Projected Capitals Lineup:

Ovechkin – Johansson – Brouwer
Laich – Backstrom – Semin
Chimera – Eakin – Ward
Hendricks – Halpern – Knuble

Erskine – Wideman
Hamrlik – Carlson
Alzner – Schultz

Neuvirth
Vokoun


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Game Preview – Game 11: Your New Jersey Devils @ Broad Street Bullies

New Jersey Devils vs Philadelphia Flyers

New Jersey Devils (4-5-1) @ Philadelphia Flyers (7-4-1)
7:00 PM EDT
TV: MSG Plus
Radio: WFAN 660 AM

Matchup:

This marks the second of six games between the two clubs this season. The Flyers and Devils last played on October 8 which was the Devils home opener, which saw the Flyers ruin the night by shutting out the Devils, 3-0.
Last Game Recap:

Wednesday night’s game against the Toronto Maple Leafs saw a lot of back and forth action. The Leafs would score, and then the Devils would tie it up. Unfortunately, Joffrey Lupul would lead the Leafs with a hat trick in the second period, giving them the 5-3 win.

The big story of the game was the return of Martin Brodeur in goal. Brodeur had missed nearly three weeks while recovering from a sore shoulder. It is no lie that Brodeur appeared to be rusty in his return, but did produce a highlight reel save on Leafs forward Phil Kessel. The save was almost the same move that Brodeur injured his shoulder on. Afterwards, Brodeur said his shoulder felt fine.

Elias sets Devils Record:

With his 93rd career powerplay goal on Wednesday night, Patrik Elias passed John MacLean and is now the franchise record holder for most powerplay goals. When asked about breaking the record, Elias told the media that it’s “not important at all if it happens in a loss.”

Not only was that goal Elias’ 93rd career powerplay goal, it also saw Adam Larsson’s first career NHL point. Larsson got the primary assist as he fed the puck beautifully to Elias.

Elias felt bad for not collecting the puck for Larsson as a souvenir.  Here’s a picture of the puck.
Against the Flyers:

All-time the Devils are 87-70-18-0 in 54 games played against the Philadelphia Flyers

When playing in Philadelphia, the Devils are 32-45-11-0 against the Flyers.

Patrik Elias is the residential Flyer killer, with 70 points (32 goals, 38 assists) in 70 career games.
Projected Devils Lineup:

Kovalchuk – Parise – Sykora
Elias – Zubrus – Clarkson

Tedenby – Henrique – Palmieri
Mills – Carter – Janssen

Greene – Larsson
Tallinder – Fayne
Volchenkov – Salvador

Hedberg
Brodeur

——————–

Flyers Goaltending:

Ilya Bryzgalov was signed to be the Flyers number one goaltender. But things seemed iffy for the Flyers between the pipes when both Bryzgalov and backup Sergei Bobrovsky gave up a combined nine goals against the Winnipeg Jets. After that, Bryzgalov told the media he had “lost his way.”

The Flyers even announced on Monday morning that Bryzgalov was not going to talk to the media except in postgame (only if he played).  However, the club is informed that it violated the league’s media policy and soon the media ban was lifted. Goalies can continue to talk to the media on a daily basis, but they will have a time limit.

All seems to be right with the number one right now as he has only allowed three goals in back-to-back wins.

Hot Flyers:

Look out for Scott Hartnell, who has scored five goals in five games, and has collected 10 points in that span.
Projected Flyers Lineup:

Hartnell – Giroux – Jagr
van Riemsdyk – Couturier – Voracek
Simmonds – Talbot – Nodl
Rinaldo – Holmstrom – Shelley

Timonen – Coburn
Lilja – Meszaros
Gustafsson – Carle

Bryzgalov
Bobrovsky


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Game Preview – Game 3: The City of Angels Crowns @ Your New Jersey Devils!

LA Kings at New Jersey DevilsThe New Jersey Devils look to close out the opening three game homestand with a win against the visiting LA Kings (1-1-0) tonight at Prudential Center. This will be the first of two matchups between the two clubs this season (Oct. 25 @ LA).

The Devils (1-1-0) are coming off a celebrated victory over the Carolina Hurricanes on Monday. After getting shutout by the visiting Flyers last Saturday, the Devils came out strong Monday with strong support from their new Captain, Zach Parise. Parise led the team with two goals including the first goal for the Devils in the 2011-2012 season. Also having a strong game Monday, was Ilya Kovalchuk who netted the game winning goal and added two assists of his own.

Pete DeBoer collected his first win as Head Coach of the Devils, something he hopes is the first of many this season. In anticipation of his second win of the season, DeBoer is making a bit of a change to the Devils lineup tonight. Skating on the fourth line tonight will be Rod Pelley and Cam Janssen making their regular season debuts in place of Adam Henrique and Eric Boulton. DeBoer says he hopes the addition of these two will bring energy and momentum to the team. Seeing Janssen on the ice will definitely be exciting to see. Willing to bet he will be in a fight before halfway through the first period.

Adam Larsson, who was listed as probable for the game, will play. Larsson said he was hit in the groin by Eric Staal in Monday’s contest against the Hurricanes. This is good news for Devils fans as the fourth overall pick in this past year’s NHL Entry Draft has been logging top on-ice minutes in his first two NHL games. It appears that Larsson is the real deal, and will be playing a full year in the NHL.

The key to victory tonight will be to stay out of the penalty box and to convert on the powerplay. The Devils have been shorthanded an outstanding 16 times in the first two games of the season. Luckily, they have not given up a single powerplay goal, but discipline is something that needs to be learned, and learned quickly. The LA Kings have a 28.6% powerplay percentage which puts them at sixth in the league. As for the Devils powerplay, the Devils have capitalized ONCE out of 10 chances, putting them 19th in the league at the moment for powerplay conversions.

Here are your projected lineups for tonight:

Devils:
Parise-Elias-Sykora
Kovalchuk-Josefson-Palmieri
Tedenby-Zubrus-Clarkson
Mills-Pelley-Janssen

Greene-Larsson
Tallinder-Fayne
Salvador-Volchenkov

Brodeur
Hedberg
—————————-
Kings:
Gagne-Kopitar-Williams
Penner-Richards-Brown
Parse-Stoll-Richardson
Clifford-Lewis-Morrow

Doughty-Mitchell
Johnson-Scuderi
Greene-Martinez

Quick
Bernier

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