New Jersey Devils (16-9-4) vs. Los Angeles (20-8-3)
7PM ET • Prudential Center • MSG+ • The One Jersey Network
*Links for The One Jersey Network can be found on newjerseydevils.com and all Devils’ social media channels.
*Game Notes Contacts: James Stolfi / Scott Litwack
Pre-Game Availability (subject to change): Head Coach John Hynes will be available outside of the Devils’ dressing room after the team’s 10:30 AM Morning Skate.
LAST GAME: DEC. 9 – NEW JERSEY 2 at NEW YORK RANGERS 5
For the first time this season, New Jersey lost consecutive games in regulation as the team was defeated by the Rangers, 5-2, at Madison Square Garden (prev., Apr.8- 4-2 L vs. NYI – Apr. 9- 4-1 L at DET.) The Devils also completed the road-portion of their season-series vs. NYR with a 1-1-0 record. The club’s two remaining games vs. their cross-river rivals will be played at Prudential Center; Feb. 21 & Apr. 3. The loss was New Jersey’s first road-loss against an Eastern Conference team in 2017-18.
The loss concluded the Devils’ seventh of 16 sets of back-to-back games (1st-game: 5-2-0/2nd game: 4-3-0). It was New Jersey’s fifth game against a fellow Metropolitan Div. team; the club is 2-3-0 (2-1-0 road) vs. the Metropolitan and is 9-4-2 (6-1-1 road) against all Eastern Conference clubs.
Devils’ goaltender, Keith Kinkaid, made his 8th start of 2017-18 and stopped 34 of 39 shots (.872 save%) to fall to 5-3-1 on the campaign. It was also the first time Kinkaid has lost consecutive games in regulation. New Jersey was shut-out in his previous start, a 5-0 loss at ARI on Dec. 2. In Kinkaid’s past two starts, New Jersey has been out-scored by a total of 8-2.
The Devils were 0-3 on the power play and have not scored in four straight games, 0-11, Dec. 2-9. Conversely, New Jersey was 3-3 on the penalty-kill and are 27 of 30 (90.0%) down a man over the last nine games, Nov. 22-Dec. 9. The Rangers out-shot New Jersey, 39-28. The Devils have been out-shot by their opponent in 21 out of 29 games this season.
Damon Severson notched his fourth goal of the season to cut the Rangers’ lead in half, 2-1, during the second period. Severson led all Devils with 21:47 of action. Stefan Noesen and Blake Coleman had the assists on Severson’s tally. Noesen has points in a career-high, three straight games (1G-2A), while Coleman has points in two-straight (1G-1A) for the first point-streak in his NHL career.
Miles Wood notched New Jersey’s second and final goal of the evening at 6:34 of the third period. It was his first goal since notching his first NHL hat-trick, Nov. 12 at CHI (11 games). He led all players with six penalty minutes and has a team-high 37 PIM this season. Wood needs just one goal to tie his 2016-17 total (8).
Pavel Zacha notched his fifth assist and 7th point of the season on Wood’s tally, in his first game since Dec. 1 at COL. Will Butcher notched his 17th assist (19PTS) on Wood’s goal. Butcher ranks second in assists on New Jersey behind T. Hall (20).
TONIGHT’S GAME VS. LOS ANGELES
The Devils will face-off against Los Angeles for the first of two games in the 2017-18 season. The clubs will meet again on St. Patrick’s day at Staples Center in their second and final contest.
New Jersey seeks to end their first two-game, losing-streak of the season. The club is 3-3-2 (2-1-1 home) vs. the Pacific Division and is 7-5-2 (3-2-1 home) against all Western Clubs.
New Jersey was win-less, 0-2-0, against LA in 2016-17, losing by a pair of goals on both Nov. 19, 2016, 4-2, at Staples Center and on Jan. 24 at Staples Center, 3-1. The Devils are 1-3-0 at The Rock, and are 3-1-0 at Staples Center in the regular-season against the Kings since the 2012 Stanley Cup Final.
The Kings are 5-0-0 against the Metropolitan Division this season. The Devils are Los Angeles’ first opponent on their four-game, road-trip where they will also face the Rangers (Dec. 15), Islanders, (Dec. 16), and Flyers (Dec. 18). New Jersey will look to snap the Kings’ eight-game, winning-streak.
- MUELLER (IR, retro. to Nov. 13, fractured clavicle, 12 games missed).
- PALMIERI (IR, retro to Nov. 20, broken right foot, 9 games missed).
Man-Games Lost to Injury/Illness: 92
SCHNEIDER – 100TH win w/ NJD, Dec. 5 at CBJ.
HALL – 100GP w/ NJ, Dec. 8 vs. CBJ.
LOVEJOY – 1GP for 100 w/ NJ
BOYLE – 2G for 100 NHL / 8PIM for 500 NHL
JOHANSSON – 3PTS for 300 NHL / 9A for 200
GIBBONS – 5GP for 100 NHL
VATANEN – 7A for 100 NHL
ZACHA – 7GP for 100 NHL/NJ
COACH HYNES – 7GC for 200 in NHL/NJ
Nov. 1: Placed F Kyle Palmieri (lower body) on I.R., retro to Oct. 22. Activated F Brian Boyle (Chronic Myeloid Leukemia) off I.R.
Nov. 9: Placed F Marcus Johansson (concussion) on I.R., retro to Nov. 1. Activated F Kyle Palmieri (lower body) off I.R., retro. to Oct. 22.
Nov. 15: Activated F Michael McLeod (lower body) and assigned to Mississauga (OHL). Placed D Mirco Mueller (broken left clavicle) on I.R., retro to Nov. 12.
Nov. 16: Activated C Travis Zajac (torn left pectoral) off I.R.
Nov. 22: Placed RW Kyle Palmieri (broken right foot) on I.R., retro to Nov. 20.
Nov. 30: Acquired D Sami Vatanen and a conditional third-round draft pick in the 2019 or 2020 NHL Draft from Anaheim for Adam Henrique, Joseph Blandisi and New Jersey’s 2018 third-round selection in the 2018 NHL Draft.
Dec. 1: Activated F Marcus Johansson (concussion) off I.R.
THERE’S SOMETHING ABOUT SAMI
New Jersey acquired defenseman Sami Vatanen and a conditional third-round selection in the 2019 or 2020 NHL Draft from Anaheim in exchange for Adam Henrique, Joseph Blandisi and New Jersey’s third-rounds selection in the 2018 NHL Draft, Nov. 30, 2014.
Fast Facts About Vatanen
– This is his fifth full NHL season; spent entire NHL career with ANA organzation.
– Won a Bronze Medal with Finland at 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, RUS.
– 2012-13 AHL All-Rookie Team/AHL First All-Star Team
– Grew up in Jyvaskyla, FIN., where he spends his off-seasons.
– Married his wife, Essi, in Sunmer 2017 in Finland.
– His favorite players growing up were Teemu Selanne and Saku Koivu.
– Favorite hockey memory was winning Bronze Medal with Finland at 2009 U-18 World Championship.
The Devils are 10-1-4 in one-goal games and are undefeated in regulation, 12-0-1, when leading after two periods. Since 2016-17, the Devils are 31-0-9 when leading after 40 minutes of play.
MILES & MILESTONES
On Nov. 12 at CHI., New Jersey stormed-back from a three-goal deficit to defeat the Blackhawks, 7-5. Miles Wood scored the first hat-trick (2PP/1EV) of his NHL career and added one assist for his first career 4-point game. Taylor Hall tallied his 400th NHL point (72nd w/ NJD) with a goal in the second period, while captain Andy Greene recorded his 200th career/Devils’ point; also from a second period tally.
The Devils 22 road-points, 10-4-2, ranks first overall in the NHL* (tie; STL). They were the final of all 31 clubs to remain undefeated on the road in any fashion, OT or SO, until Nov. 3 at EDM, 6-3 L. Their 5-0-0 road record to start 2017-18 was the club’s best road-start since 2009-10, when club started 9-0-0 on the road.
*As of Dec. 11
John Moore has scored two overtime goals this season (Oct. 19 at OTT & Nov. 12 at CHI) and six OT tallies since joining NJD in 2015-16. His six career sudden-death tallies leads all NHL defensemen since 3-on-3 overtime was implemented in the 2015-16 season. He ranks second among all active players, behind LA’s Jeff Carter (7). In just his third season with the Devils, he ranks second in franchise history in OT goals by a defenseman (6, 2015-17) behind Hall-of-Famer Scott Niedermayer (8, 1991-2004).
HALL OF A SEASON
Taylor Hall leads New Jersey with 29 points (9G-20A) in 29 GP this season. His 1.00 points-per-game ranks 7th among all left-wingers in the NHL* (tie, F. Forsberg – NSH & A. Lee – NYI) and puts him on pace for a career-best, 82 points.
*As of Dec. 11
GETTING GIBBY WITH IT
On Oct. 11 at Toronto, Brian Gibbons scored the first three-on-five shorthanded goal in franchise history. He set a new career-high after scoring his sixth goal, in just his 12th game of 2017-18, on Nov. 3 at EDM. In 66 prior NHL games between Columbus and Pittsburgh, from 2013-15, he had five goals and 17 assists for 22PTS.
Gibbons notched a shorthanded goal on a penalty shot, Oct. 28 vs. ARI. He ranks third in the NHL (tie, 11 others) with two shorthanded goals this season.
- Nathan Bastian – AHL – 12/6
- Mackenzie Blackwood – AHL – 12/9
- BRIAN BOYLE – 12/18
- Yaroslav Dyblenko – AHL – 12/28
NJD by NATION (*most NHL/^fewest NHL): as of Dec. 11
- USA – 14*
- Canada – 5^ (tie; NYR)
- Switzerland – 1
- Sweden – 1
- Czech Republic – 1
- Finland – 1