New Jersey Devils (25-22-13) at New York Islanders (23-30-8)
1:00 PM ET • Nassau Coliseum • MSG Plus 2, Sports Radio 66 AM & 101.9 FM WFAN
Head Coach Peter DeBoer will be available to the media outside of the Devils’ Locker Room at 10:50 AM Select player availability to follow.
New Jersey is 11-8-3=25pts vs. Metropolitan Division opponents this season following a 5-2 win over Columbus at Prudential Center on Thursday.
Tonight’s game opens New Jersey’s 16th of 22 sets of back-to-back games. The Devils are 6-6-3 in first games and 7-4-4 in second games when playing on consecutive dates.
With Thursday’s win, New Jersey has points in 13 of its last 17 games (8-4-5=21pts) and in 20 of its last 27 contests (13-7-7=33pts). The Devils are 6-0-2=14pts in their last eight games at Prudential Center.
The Devils’ top-ranked penalty-kill unit was 3/3 Thursday and is 39/42 (92.9%) over the last 12 games. New Jersey is 169/193 (87.6%) on the PK this season, which is tops in the NHL (2nd, Pittsburgh, 156/181, 86.2%). At home, the Devils are 84/91 (92.3%) which also leads the league (2nd, Pittsburgh, 72/80, 90.0%). New Jersey’s 8.0 PIM per game is the fewest in the NHL (2nd, Carolina & Chicago, 8.2).
New Jersey was 2/3 on the power play Thursday, snapping an 0/12 stretch over the previous four games. The Devils are 6-0-0 when recording more than one power play goal.
The Devils are allowing just 25.3 shots per-game, which is the fewest in the NHL. New Jersey has allowed a league-low 53 goals-against at home and its 2.33 goals-against per-game overall ranks fourth.
Martin Brodeur is expected to make the start this afternoon. Brodeur will be making his first appearance since January 26 vs. the New York Rangers at Yankee Stadium (L, 40:00, 6 GA, 21 saves).
Cory Schneider (17 saves) made his seventh straight start in goal Thursday and improved to 12-11-9 this season. Schneider is now 8-3-4 with one ShO, a 1.47 GAA & .942 save-percentage in his last 16 appearances. He’s held opponents to two-goals-or-less in 14 of his last 15 starts.
Adam Henrique posted his third career two-goal game on Thursday. He netted his eighth career shorthanded goal/second of 2013-14; Henrique’s 8 SHG since the start of the 2011-12 season are tops in the NHL (2nd, Cal Clutterbuck, Ilya Kovalchuk & Brad Marchand, 7 each). He also notched his team-leading sixth power play goal. He has a career-high (tie, 2011-2) 16 goals overall this season, which ties Michael Ryder for second on the team. Henrique needs just four points to reach 100 in his NHL career (43g-53a-96pts).
Jaromir Jagr scored the 699th goal (PP) of his NHL career on Thursday. He’s looking to become just the seventh player in NHL history to reach the 700-goal mark and is now just nine goals behind Mike Gartner (708) for sixth-place all-time. Jagr had an assist on February 7 vs. Edmonton and now has 1,039 in his NHL career, just one behind Marcel Dionne (1,040a) for ninth place all-time.
Patrik Elias tied his season-high with 1g-2a-3pts on Thursday, his 11th multiple-point game of the season/fifth in the last ten games.
Ryane Clowe scored his fourth goal of the season on Thursday and is now just seven points shy of 300 in his NHL career (108g-185a-293pts).
Eric Gelinas, who was recalled from Albany (AHL) on Monday, returned to the lineup Thursday for the first time since January 30 at Dallas and recorded a power play assist. He leads the Devils with 4g-10a-14pts with the man-advantage this season.
Damien Brunner (lower body) left the game Thursday and did not return. He didn’t make the trip and is out today.
Bryce Salvador (collarbone) is also out today.
Devils vs. Islanders
Today’s game between the Devils and Islanders marks the third of five meetings between the clubs this season, and the second of three to be played at Nassau Coliseum.
New Jersey leads the season series 1-0-1 following a 2-1 victory in Long Island on December 28. Damien Brunner (2g), Michael Ryder (1g-1a) and Marek Zidlicky (2a) each have two points to lead the Devils, while Michael Grabner has 2g-1a-3pts to leads the Islanders. Martin Brodeur (0-0-1, 2.77 GAA & .885 save %) and Cory Schneider (1-0-0, 1.00 GAA & .968 save %) have split the goaltending duties for New Jersey and Evgeni Nabokov (1-1-0, 2.42 GAA & .901 save %) has started both games for New York.
New Jersey is 81-85-22 vs. New York all time, including a 34-49-12 mark in the previous 95 games on Long Island. The Devils are 7-3-0 in their last ten games at Nassau Coliseum.
Patrik Elias is the Devils’ all-time leading scorer with 32g-49a-81pts in 82 career games vs. the Islanders while Frans Nielsen has 6g-11a-17pts in 34 appearances vs. New Jersey to lead New York’s active skaters.
Brodeur is 50-28-8 with 10 ShO, a 2.24 goals-against average and .911 save-percentage in 88 games vs. New York, while Schneider’s start on December 28 was the first his career vs. the Isles.
Nabokov is now 6-9-0 with 1 ShO a 2.89 GAA & .892 save % in 15 games vs. the Devils. Kevin Poulin allowed five goals on 27 shots in his only career start vs. New Jersey on January 17, 2011.
Ryane Clowe needs seven points to reach 300 in his NHL career.
Adam Henrique needs four points to reach 100 in his NHL career.
Jaromir Jagr needs one goal to reach 700 in his NHL career.
Travis Zajac needs three assists to reach 200 in his NHL career.
D Bryce Salvador (collarbone) is out today.
RW Damien Brunner (lower body) is out today.
Total man-games lost to injury/illness: 211
Feb. 24: Recalled defenseman Eric Gelinas from Albany (AHL).
Feb. 20: Recalled defenseman Jon Merrill from Albany.
Feb. 9: Assigned defenseman Jon Merrill to Albany.
Feb. 3: Activated defenseman Peter Harrold from Injured Reserve.
Feb. 1: Assigned forward Mike Sislo to Albany (AHL).