Devils Pre-Game 10/24/15

New Jersey Devils (3-3-1) at Buffalo Sabres (2-5-0)

7:00 PM ET • First Niagara Center • MSG Plus • Sports Radio 66 AM & 101.9 FM WFAN

Pre-Game Availability

  • New Jersey will have a 11:30 AM morning skate at First Niagara Center.

Coming Into Tonight

  • New Jersey is looking to win four straight for the first time since Feb. 17-23 & to win three consecutive road games for the first time since Oct. 9-14, 2014. 
  • The Devils have won three consecutive games in OT/SO for the first time since Mar. 28-Apr. 2, 2008: March 28 vs. Philadelphia, 3-2 (SO); April 1 at NY Islanders, 2-1 (OT); April 2 vs. Boston, 3-2 (SO).
  • New Jersey scored two power play goals (2/4) for the first time this season on Thursday (last time, Jan. 14 at Los Angeles, 2/4). The team has scored with the man-advantage in five of its first seven games and ranks seventh in the NHL (6/25, 24.0%).
  • Cory Schneider is expected to make his fifth consecutive start in goal; he’s looking to win four straight games for the first time as a Devil.
  • Adam Larsson will appear in his 200th career NHL game tonight.

Last Game – October 22 – Devils 5 at Ottawa 4 (OT)

  • The Devils have played in four consecutive overtime games for the first time since January 30-February 7, 2014 (2-0-2). 
  • New Jersey  improved to 62-57 in the shootout all-time (25-28 on the road).
  • The Devils have points in six of their last seven games played in Ottawa (3-1-3=9pts) and are 7-3-4=18pts vs. the Senators since 2011-12. Each of the last three meetings at Canadian Tire Centre have gone to overtime/shootout (2-0-1).
  • New Jersey also allowed its third shorthanded goal of the season.
  • The club’s penalty-kill unit was 4/5 and is 13/15 (86.8%) over the last four games.
  • New Jersey tied a season-high with 32 shots on goal (also Oct. 16 vs. San Jose) & allowed a season-high 39 shots against.
  • Cory Schneider made a season-high 35 saves (+ 3/4 SO) and earned the 100th win of his NHL career (45 with New Jersey).
  • Lee Stempniak scored at 19:28 of the third period to tie the game/force overtime & added an assist to extend his point-scoring streak to three games (2g-2a-4pts). Stempniak assisted on Adam Larsson’s overtime goal on Tuesday vs. Arizona & scored the game-winner in OT on Sunday at Madison Square Garden. He also scored the game-deciding goal in the shootout tonight, the sixth of his NHL career.
  • Stempniak’s goal marked the 45th time in team history that the Devils have tied the game with the goaltender pulled for the extra attacker (last time, March 26, 2015, Steve Bernier, 3-2 OT loss at Washington).
  • Adam Henrique scored his team-leading fourth goal of the season & recorded the primary assist on Tootoo’s tally for his second multiple-point outing in the last three games. Henrique now has 3g-2a-5pts over the last four games.
  • Travis Zajac scored a five-on-three power play goal at 5:02 of the first period and now has 2g-2a-4pts over the past two games. Zajac has goals in back-to-back games for the first time since February 27-28 (2g).
  • Jordin Tootoo scored a power play goal just 1:30 later, his first of the season. It was the sixth PPG of Tootoo’s career/second in his last 24 games dating back to March 6. He also received a five-minute major for fighting Chris Neil in the third period.
  • Mike Cammalleri tied a career-high with 3a (five times previously, last time, February 13, 2013 vs. Dallas). He has points in a season-high three straight games (1g-4a-5pts) and leads the Devils with 2g-6a-8pts overall.
  • Kyle Palmieri was credited with the primary assist on Zajac’s tally, which gives him 1g-2a-3pts on the season (1g-1a-2pts on the PP).
  • Jacob Josefson also assisted on Tootoo’s goal and has points in back-to-back games (2a). He also scored in the shootout and is now 7/13 (53.8%) in his NHL career.
  • Damon Severson recorded the primary assist on Stempniak’s goal, his third in the last four games.
  • Stephen Gionta received a 10 minute game misconduct and a five minute major for spearing. He had just 52 career PIM, all minors, coming into the game.
  • Jon Merrill was a healthy scratch.
  • Tuomo Ruutu (lower body/maintenance) missed his third straight game.

Tonight’s Opponent

  • Buffalo fell to 2-5-0 with a 7-3 loss to Montreal at First Niagara Center last night.
  • Matt Moulson and Ryan O’Reilly scored for the Sabres, while Cody Franson posted 2a.
  • O’Reilly and Moulson lead the club with 2g-2a-4pts each.
  • Jack Eichel, the second overall pick of the 2015 NHL Entry Draft, has 2g through his first six games. Eichel scored in the season-opener vs. Ottawa on Oct.8 & recorded the game-winner on Oct. 12 vs. Columbus.
  • Sam Reinhart, the second overall pick in 2014, scored the first goal of his NHL career on October 17 vs. Tampa Bay.
  • Evander Kane, who was acquired from Winnipeg on February 11, made his Sabres debut on Oct. 8. Kane missed the final 27 games of 2014-15 due to a shoulder injury. He has 1g-2a-3pts through the first seven games.
  • Former Devil Brian Gionta has played in four straight after missing the first three games of the season with a lower body injury.
  • Chad Johnson has played in all seven games for the Sabres and is 2-5-0 with a 3.06 GAA & .879 save-percentage.
  • Robin Lehner started the season-opener vs. Ottawa, but left the game due to a high ankle sprain. The Sabres acquired Lehner, along with David Legwand, from the Senators in exchange for a first round pick in the 2015 Entry Draft on June 26.

Devils vs. Sabres

2014-15

Record: 3-0-0 (1-0-0 on the road)

Goals/Against: 9-3 (3-1 on the road)

Shots For/Against: 90-75 (27-29 on the road)

Power Play/Penalty Kill: 1-8 (12.5%)/7-9 (77.8%)

Leading Scorers: NJ – Patrik Elias (2g-2a-4pts), Adam Henrique (0g-3a-3pts), six players with 2pts; Buf. – Tyler Ennis (1g-1a-2pts), five players with 1pt.

Goaltending: NJ – Cory Schneider (2-0-0, 0.96 GAA, .957 save %), Keith Kinkaid (1-0-0, 1.00 GAA, .966 save ); Buf. – Michal Neuvirth (0-0-1, 0.92 GAA, .971 save %), Jhonas Enroth (0-1-0, 3.01 GAA, .889 save %), Anders Lindback (0-1-0, 3.00 GAA, .889 save %).

All-Time 

Record: 53-41-20 (24-21-12 on the road)

Goals For/Against: 338-330 (178-176 on the road)

Career Leading Scorers: NJ – Patrik Elias (12g-30a-42pts), Mike Cammalleri (7g-4a-11pts), Travis Zajac (5g-6a-11pts), Adam Henrique (2g-9a-11pts), Andy Greene (2g-9a-11pts); Buf. – Matt Moulson (8g-5a-13pts), Evander Kane (9g-2a-11pts), David Legwand (5g-6a-11pts).

Career Goaltending: NJ – Cory Schneider (3-2-2, 1 ShO, 1.53 GAA, .934 save %), Keith Kinkaid (1-0-0, 1.00 GAA, .966 save %); Buf. – Chad Johnson (1-1-0, 2.50 GAA, .909 save %), Nathan Lieuwen (1-0-0, 1.85 GAA, .943 save %).

Notable: New Jersey has points in 12 of its last 13 games vs. Buffalo (8-1-4=20pts), is 3-1-3=9pts over the last seven on the road, and is 29-10-14=72pts vs. the Sabres since 2001-02…The Devils were 16-10-1 vs. Dan Bylsma when served as Pittsburgh’s Head Coach from 2009-14…New Jersey has played 12 shootouts all-time vs. Buffalo (5-7), more than any other NHL team; the New York Rangers (10, 5-5) are second…Cory Schneider is 3-1-1 with one shutout & a 1.15 GAA in five games vs. Buffalo as a Devil.

Connections: Stephen Gionta’s brother, Brian, was New Jersey’s fourth choice (third round) and the 82nd overall selection of the 1998 Entry Draft. He played seven seasons with the Devils from 2001-09 and was a member of the 2003 Stanley Cup Championship team…Executive VP/General Manager Ray Shero and Buffalo’s Head Coach Dan Bylsma served in the same capacity and won a Stanley Cup Championship with Pittsburgh in 2008-09…John Hynes (2010-15) and Bylsma (2008-09) both served as Head Coach of Wilkes-Barre/Scranton (AHL)…Hynes (1993-97) and Buffalo forward Jack Eichel (2014-15) both played at Boston University…Sabres’ Assistant Coach Dave Barr served in the same role with the Devils for three-plus seasons and played in 103 games with New Jersey from 1991-93.

Devils in Detail

  • ONE FOR THE BOOKS: On Thursday, the Devils won after overcoming a two-goal deficit in the last six minutes of the third period for the first time in team history on the road & the fourth time overall (last time, Feb. 5, 2010, 4-3 vs. Toronto). (credit Elias Sports Bureau)
  • HYNES TIES RECORD: With Thursday’s 5-4 SO win in Ottawa, John Hynes became just the third coach in NHL history to record his first three wins in overtime or a shootout. He joined Charlie Querrie, who won three straight OT games with the Toronto St. Patricks in 1923, and Todd Richards, who won two OT & one SO as Minnesota’s Head Coach in 2009. (credit Elias Sports Bureau)
  • LEE-DING THE WAY: Lee Stempniak has factored into each victory during New Jersey’s three-game winning streak. On Thursday at Ottawa, he scored at 19:28 of the third period to tie the game/force OT and netted the game-deciding goal in the shootout. On Tuesday vs. Arizona, Stempniak assisted on Adam Larsson’s overtime goal. Stempniak gave the Devils their first win of the season by scoring in OT vs. the NY Rangers on Sunday at Madison Square Garden. 
  • D’MEN ARE OT HEROES: Including Adam Larsson’s  overtime goal on Tuesday vs. Arizona, six of the Devils’ last nine OT game-winners have been scored by a defenseman. 
  • SHORT GAME: Travis Zajac scored a shorthanded goal on Oct. 21 vs. Arizona; three of his last seven goals since Jan. 6 have come on the penalty kill. With six career SHG, Zajac is now tied (Kirk Muller, Mark Johnson & Mel Bridgman) for 11th in Devils’ history.
  • GREENE TIES DANO: Andy Greene recorded his 142nd career assist on Sunday at the New York Rangers to tie Ken Daneyko for sixth among Devils’ defensemen all-time. Joe Cirella (147a) is fifth. With 31 career goals/173 career points, Greene is also just five goals/points behind Daneyko (36g/178pts) for sixth in team history.
  • SHERO’S DEVILS TAKE THE ICE: Ray Shero was named the fourth general manager in team history on May 4, 2015. Prior to joining the Devils, he spent eight seasons, 2006-07 through 2013-14, as executive vice president and general manager of the Pittsburgh Penguins. During that time, the team compiled a 373-193-56 (.645) mark, won the 2009 Stanley Cup Championship, two consecutive Eastern Conference titles in 2007-08 and 2008-09 and had three first-place divisional finishes. Shero received the General Manager of the Year Award in 2012-13, as voted on by the 30 NHL GMs, a panel of NHL executives, as well as print and broadcast media.
  • HYNES LEADS NEW COACHING STAFF: John Hynes was introduced as the 17th head coach in Devils’ history June 2, 2015. He joined the organization after spending the previous six seasons with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton (AHL), including the past five years, 2010-11 through 2014-15, as head coach. Hynes led the Penguins to a 231-126-10-17 (.637) mark during his tenure, including five straight 40-plus victory campaigns and five consecutive playoff berths, which included back-to-back AHL Eastern Conference Finals appearances in 2012-13 and 2013-14. Geoff Ward and Alain Nasreddine will serve as his assistant coaches & Chris Terreri returns as goaltending coach. At, 40 years, 7 months-old, Hynes is the youngest head coach in the NHL. Upon making his debut Oct. 9 vs. Winnipeg, he also became the third-youngest coach in Devils’ history behind Jim Schoenfeld, who was 35 years-old when he took over on Jan. 26, 1988 & Billy MacMillan, the team’s first-ever head coach, who was 39 on Oct. 5, 1982
  • GREENE NAMED CAPTAIN: Andy Greene was named the 11th captain in Devils’ history on Friday. Mike Cammalleri, Patrik Elias, Adam Henrique and Travis Zajac will serve as alternates. He has played in a career-high 236 straight games since March 6, 2012, which stands as the second-longest stretch among defensemen in franchise history.
  • CORY’S NUMBER ONE: Cory Schneider ranks first with a 2.12 GAA (2nd, Jonathan Quick, 2.17) and a .927 save % (2nd, Henrik Lundqvist, .925) among goaltenders that have played in at least 100 games since the start of 2010-11.
  • A LOT OF NEW FACES: Six players (Sergey Kalinin, John Moore, Kyle Palmieri, David Schlemko, Lee Stempniak and Jiri Tlusty) made their Devils’ debut in the season-opener Oct. 9 vs. Winnipeg, which tied a team-record. It had happened three times previously: 2007-08 (Aaron Asham, Niclas Bergfors, Mike Mottau, Vitaly Vishnevski, Dainius Zubrus), 1989-90 (Neil Brady, Viacheslav Fetisov, Walt Poddubny, Reijo Ruotsalainen, Sergei Starikov, Sylvain Turgeon) & 1984-85 (Uli Hiemer, Kirk Muller, David Pichette, Rich Preston, Doug Sulliman, Mitch Wilson). -credit Elias Sports Bureau
  • FOUNTAIN OF YOUTH: The average age of the Devils’ opening-night roster was 27.2; it was 31.0 a season ago.
  • FUN WITH NUMBERS: Mike Cammalleri became the first player in Devils’ history to wear the no. 13 on his jersey Oct. 9 vs. Winnipeg. He’s just the second player in franchise history to suit up with No. 13, joining Robin Burns – cousin of the late former Devils coach and Hall-of-Famer Pat Burns – who wore it with the Kansas City Scouts in the 1970’s. Eric Gelinas, who wore no. 22 last season, joined Stephane Richer as the second player in New Jersey history to wear no. 44. Jordin Tootoo is once again wearing no. 22, which he skated as with Nashville and Detroit from 2006-14, after wearing no. 20 last season. Sergey Kalinin, no. 51, became the first player in Devils’ history to wear any number in the 50’s.
  • WINNING TOUCH: Mike Cammalleri finished third (tie, w/ 4 others) in the NHL with 8 game-winning goals in 2014-15. He has 16 GWG over the past two seasons, which ranks fourth among all skaters behind Max Pacioretty (22,) Alex Ovechkin (21), and Rick Nash (17).
  • THIS DAY IN DEVILS HISTORY: On October 24, 2009, Travis Zajac  recorded 1g-1a-2pts and Martin Brodeur made 32 saves in New Jersey’s 4-1 win at Pittsburgh. 
  • PROSPECT WATCH: John Quenneville, New Jersey’s first choice (30th overall) in 2014, posted 1g-1a-2pts in Brandon’s (WHL) 4-3 SO win at Spokane on Wednesday. Quenneville has 6g-8a-14pts in eight games overall. On Monday, he was named to Team WHL for the 2015 CHL Canada Russia Series.

Milestone Watch

  • Mike Cammalleri – Needs 2 PPG for 100 in his career.
  • Stephen Gionta – Needs 5 GP for 200 in his career.
  • Adam Larsson – Needs 1 GP for 200 in his career.
  • Kyle Palmieri – Needs 8pts for 100 in his NHL career.
  • Tuomo Ruutu – Needs 1 GP for 100 with NJ & 3a for 200 in his career.

Injuries

  • Tuomo Ruutu (lower body/maintenance, three games missed) is day-to-day.
  • Patrik Elias (right knee, seven games missed) is an injured, non-roster player.
  • Total man-games lost to injury/illness: 14

Recent Transactions

  • Oct. 21 – Assigned F Reid Boucher to Albany (AHL).
  • Oct. 14 – Assigned G Yann Danis to Albany; recalled F Reid Boucher from Albany.
  • Oct. 13 – Assigned F Reid Boucher to Albany . Recalled G Yann Danis from Albany under emergency conditions.
  • Oct. 6 – Assigned D Seth Helgeson to Albany. Returned C Pavel Zacha to Sarnia (OHL). Acquired RW Brian O’Neill from Los Angeles in exchange for a conditional seventh-round selection in the 2017 Entry Draft.
  • Oct. 5 – Signed G Ken Appleby to a three-year, entry-level contract.
  • Oct. 4 – D Marc-Andre Gragnani cleared waivers/was assigned to Albany.
  • Oct. 3 – RW Lee Stempniak agreed to terms on a one-year/$850,000 contract.

Game Resources

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