Devils Pre-Game 2/23/16

New Jersey Devils (29-24-7) vs. New York Rangers (34-19-6)

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

Pre-Game Availability

  • New Jersey will have a 10:30 AM morning skate at Prudential Center.

Coming Into Tonight

  • New Jersey has lost three straight in regulation but is 8-5-2=18pts over its last 15 games.
  • The Devils are 5-2-1=11pts over their last eight games at Prudential Center and 14-12-4=32pts at The Rock overall.
  • Including tonight, three of New Jersey’s next four games will be played vs. Metropolitan Division opponents. The Devils are 8-11-2=18pts vs. the Metro this season, including 4-4-2=10pts at home.
  • Cory Schneider is expected to start in goal. He’s looking for his 26th win of the season, which would tie his career-high (also, 2014-15).

Last Game – Feb. 20 – Devils 3 at Washington 4

  • The Devils fell to 0-2-1=1pt. in the season series & are now winless in six straight games  vs. Washington overall (0-4-2-2pts).
  • New Jersey is 3-3-1=7pts over their last seven road games and is 15-12-3=33pts away from Prudential Center overall.
  • The Capitals outshot the Devils, 32-24, including 24-10 over the final two periods.
  • Cory Schneider (28 saves) took the loss in goal and fell to 25-19-6 on the season.
  • Reid Boucher registered a career-high 1g-2a-3pts for his third multiple-point game of the season. He has 2g-4a-6pts over the last six games & has 4g-5a-9pts in 18 appearances overall.
  • Travis Zajac scored his ninth goal of the season & also posted the primary assist on Boucher’s goal for his sixth multiple-point game. Zajac has 2g-5a-7pts over the last eight games and 9g-21a-30pts overall. He now has 2g-7a-9pts over his last 11 games vs. the Capitals.
  • Kyle Palmieri scored his team-leading 22nd goal of the season & recorded an assist on Zajac’s goal for his eighth multiple-point game. Palmieri now has 2g-2a-4pts over the last five games. He recorded a season-best +3 rating.
  • John Moore collected the secondary assist on Boucher’s goal and has 3a over the last five games.
  • Andy Greene played in his 289th consecutive game, dating back to Mar. 6, 2012, and has passed Aaron Broten (288 games, Mar. 27, 1986-Jan. 4, 1990) for the sixth-longest such stretch in Devils’ history. Jay Pandolfo is next on the list, having appeared in 307 consecutive games from Jan. 22, 2003-Nov. 28, 2007.
  • Tuomo Ruutu returned to the lineup for the first time since Jan. 26 at Pittsburgh. He was a healthy scratch in each of the previous nine games. Ruutu totaled two shots on goal and three hits in 9:53 of action.
  • David Schlemko and Jordin Tootoo led the Devils with three shots on goal each. 
  • Seth Helgeson posted a team-high four blocked shots.

Tonight’s Opponent

  • New York has won two straight, including a 1-0 OT victory over Detroit at Madison Square Garden on Sunday, and is 7-1-1=15pts over its last nine games.
  • The Rangers have won each of their last three road games and are 12-13-3=27pts on the road overall.
  • New York’s power play unit is 5/14 (35.7%) over the past five games.
  • The Rangers are averaging 2.85 goals/game, which ranks fifth in the NHL.
  • New York’s 939 blocked shots are the third-most in the NHL. The Rangers have registered 1,602 hits, which ranks sixth in the league.
  • Kevin Klein scored the overtime goal vs. Detroit on Sunday, his third OT goal since the start of the 2014-15 season. 
  • Mats Zuccarello has posted 2g-9a-11pts over the past nine games and leads New York with 20g-26a-46pts overall. He has three multi-point games over the last five contests (2g-5a-7pts).
  • Derick Brassard has 4g-1a-5pts over the last four games and is second on the club with 22g-23a-45pts overall. Brassard’s 22g leads the Rangers and are a career-high (previously, 19g, 2014-15).
  • J.T. Miller has 9g-5a-14pts over the last 16 games, including a career-high 3a/pts Feb. 18 at Toronto. Miller has scored three game-winning goals during that stretch and leads the Rangers with 5 GWG overall.
  • Derek Stepan has 4g-3a-7pts, including two GWG, over the last seven games. The Rangers are 31-14-4 in games in which Stepan has played & are 3-5-2 without him in the lineup. Stepan has posted 11g-12a-23pts and a +14 rating in 27 career games vs. the Devils.
  • Kevin Hayes recorded the primary assist on the OT goal on Sunday and has 3g-3a-6pts over the past six games. 
  • Chris Kreider also assisted on Klein’s OT goal and has 3a over the last six contests.
  • Keith Yandle has 2g-8a-10pts over the last 14 games and leads New York’s defensemen with 4g-29a-33pts this season. Yandle has played in 528 consecutive games dating back to Mar. 26, 2009. 
  • Captain Ryan McDonagh (jaw contusion/neck spasms) is expected to miss his second straight game.
  • Rick Nash (bone bruise) is expected to miss his 13th consecutive game.
  • Henrik Lundqvist stopped all 22 shots he faced and recorded his fourth shutout of the season on Sunday. vs. Detroit. He ranks third (tie, Jonathan Quick & Martin Jones) in the NHL with 29 wins this season. Lundqvist is 10-3-0 with two shutouts, a 1.74 goals-against average and a .933 save-percentage in his last 13 starts since Jan. 16.
  • Antti Raanta made 35 saves an earned the win on Thursday at Toronto. He’s allowed two goals or fewer in seven of his 11 starts this season & is 5-4-2 with one shutout, a 2.52 goals-against average & a .907 save-percentage in 14 appearances overall.

Devils vs. Rangers

Last Game – Feb. 8 – Devils 1 at NY Rangers 2

Travis Zajac scored his second shorthanded goal of the season/seventh of his NHL career. Adam Henrique recorded the lone assist. Cory Schneider (35 saves) took the loss in goal.

2015-16

Record: 2-1-0 (1-0-0 at home)

Goals/Against: 6-5 (3-2 at home)

Shots For/Against: 77-97 (25-33 at home)

Power Play/Penalty Kill:  2-5 (40.0%)/11-11 (100.0%)

Leading Scorers: NJ – Adam Henrique (1g-3a-4pts), Lee Stempniak (2g-1a-3pts), Andy Greene (0g-2a-2pts), Damon Severson (0g-2a-2pts); NYR – J.T. Miller (3g-0a-3pts), Derick Brassard (0g-2a-2pts), Jesper Fast (0g-2a-2pts).

Goaltending:  NJ – Cory Schneider (2-1-0, 1.65 GAA, .948 save %); NYR – Henrik Lundqvist (1-1-1, 1.98 GAA, .922 save %).

All-Time

Record: 87-83-28 (55-36-8 at home)

Goals For/Against: 580-621 (322-294 at home)

Career Leading Scorers: NJ – Patrik Elias (23g-50a-73pts), Travis Zajac (13g-13a-26pts), Michael Cammalleri (7g-11a-18pts), Tyler Kennedy (6g-8a-14pts); NYR – Derek Stepan (11g-12a-23pts), Dan Girardi (2g-16a-18pts), Dan Boyle (1g-11a-12pts).

Career Goaltending: NJ – Cory Schneider (3-5-1, 1 ShO, 2.21 GAA .926 save %), Keith Kinkaid (0-0-0, 3.79 GAA, .885 save %); NYR – Henrik Lundqvist (34-15-7, 8 ShO, 1.87 GAA, .932 save %), Antti Raanta (2-0-0, 2.50 GAA, .872 save %).

Notable: Tonight’s game is the third meeting between the clubs over the past 22 days (also, Feb. 2 at NJ & Feb. 8 at NYR)…Each of the three previous games this season have been decided by one goal…Lee Stempniak has 3g-1a-4pts in four games vs. New York since being traded on Mar. 1, 2015.

Connections: Executive VP/GM Ray Shero’s father, Fred, played three seasons with the Rangers from 1947-50 & served as their Head Coach from 1978-80…John Moore spent parts of three seasons with New York from 2013-15…Lee Stempniak appeared in 53 games for the Rangers in 2014-15…Stempniak and Rangers’ F Tanner Glass were teammates with Pittsburgh in 2013- 14 & at Dartmouth from 2003-05; both served as captain of Big Green…Cory Schneider played under Rangers’ Head Coach Alain Vigneault from 2008-13 when Vigneault served as Head Coach of the Vancouver Canucks…Stefan Matteau is the son of former Ranger Stephane Matteau…Devils’ Assistant General Manager Tom Fitzgerald and Rangers’ F Kevin Hayes are cousins…Rangers SVP/Assistant GM Jim Schoenfeld was New Jersey’s Head Coach for parts of three seasons from Jan. 26, 1988-Nov. 6 1989…Adam Larsson and Rangers center Oscar Lindberg are both from Skelleftea, Sweden.

Devils in Detail

  • IRON MAN: Andy Greene played in his 289th consecutive game, dating back to Mar. 6, 2012, on Saturday at Washington and has passed Aaron Broten (Mar. 27, 1986-Jan. 4, 1990) for the sixth-longest such stretch in Devils’ history. Jay Pandolfo is next on the list, having appeared in 307 consecutive games from Jan. 22, 2003-Nov. 28, 2007. Greene played in his 267th straight game and also passed Broten (266 games, Dec. 6, 1982-Feb. 15, 1986) for seventh on the list on Dec. 30 at Ottawa. Greene’s streak is the second-longest in team history among defensemen, trailing only Ken Daneyko’s 388-game stretch from Nov. 4, 1989-Mar. 29, 1994.
  • REID ALL ABOUT IT: Reid Boucher registered a career-high 1g-2a-3pts on Saturday at Washington for his third multiple-point game of the season. He has 2g-4a-6pts over the last six games & has 4g-5a-9pts in 18 appearances overall.
  • COUNT ON CORY: Cory Schneider has allowed two goals or less in 33 of his last 43 starts since Oct. 29 and is 21-17-5 with four shutouts, a 2.01 goals-against average & .930 save-percentage during that stretch. Schneider leads the NHL in minutes (2,994), games played (50) and GAA (2.06, tie), is fourth in shutouts (4, tie) & save % (.928, tie) & is sixth (tie) in wins (25).
  • SPECIAL TEAMS: The Devils’ power play has converted 13/37 (35.1%) of their opportunities in its last 13 games.  New Jersey is also 9/24 (37.5%) with the man-advantage over the past eight games at Prudential Center. The Devils rank seventh (tie, Dallas) in the NHL on the PP overall (39/186, 21.0%) and are tenth (tie, Vancouver) at home (20/94, 21.3%). New Jersey was 3/3 on the penalty kill on Saturday at Washington and is 32/35 (91.4%) over the past ten games. The Devils are 17/19 (89.5%) on the penalty-kill over their last six games at Prudential Center. The Devils’ PK unit ranks seventh (tie, Boston & Buffalo) in the league overall (159/192, 82.8%) and is 14th (tie, Pittsburgh) at home (71/86, 82.6%).
  • STILL STRONG ON DEFENSE: New Jersey leads the NHL with a 2.21 team goals-against average (second, Washington & Florida, 2.25). According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the only NHL team to lead the league in GAA and miss the playoffs was the 1930-31 New York Americans.
  • LEE-DING THE WAY: Lee Stempniak has reached the 40-pt. mark (15g-25a) for the fourth time in his NHL career/first time since 2009-10 (28g-20a-48pts in 80 games). He has recorded 6g-5a-11pts over the last 17 games and leads the Devils with 15g-25a-40pts overall. Stempniak was named the NHL’s Second Star of the Week for the period ending Jan. 24, leading the league (tie) with 4g in three games (4g-1a-5pts).
  • SCHLEMKO’S KOs: David Schlemko scored the game-winning goal on Feb. 2 vs. the NY Rangers. It was the third GWG of his NHL career/in a span of 27 appearances. Each of his GWG have come vs. a Metropolitan Division opponent (also, Dec. 29 vs. Carolina & Nov. 14 Pittsburgh). Schlemko had points in back-to-back games Feb. 14-16 (2a) & has established new career-highs across the board with 6g-11a-17pts this season (prev., 4g-10a-14pts, 2010-11). 
  • HEY, JOE: Rookie F Joseph Blandisi scored a power play goal in back-to-back games Feb. 13-14. He has 4g-2a-6pts over the last ten games & 5g-7a-12pts over the last 18 contests.
  • PALMIERI’S CAREER YEAR: Kyle Palmieri has established new career-highs with 22 goals (previously, 14g, 2014-15 & 2013-14) and 39 points (prev., 14g-17a-31pts in 71 games, 2013-14) this season. Palmieri is on pace for 30g-23a-53pts, which would nearly double his previous career-high.
  • FIRST CLASS:  New Jersey scored five goals in the first period of its 6-3 victory over Ottawa at Prudential Center on Jan. 21. It was the team’s most goals in a single frame since also scoring 5g in the third period of a 6-3 win vs. Tampa Bay on Jan. 9, 2011. The Devils tied a franchise record for goals in the first period (accomplished five times, last time Mar. 11, 1997 vs. Edmonton). Travis Zajac posted 1g-3a-4pts, the first Devil to record 4pts in a single-period since Ilya Kovalchuk (Mar. 23, 2010 vs. Columbus, 1g-3a, 2nd period) & just the second player in team history to do so in the first period (Patrik Elias, 1g-3a, Dec. 20, 2000 vs. Dallas). Zajac was the first NHL player to record 4pts in a period since Claude Giroux (2g-2a) on Dec. 19, 2013 vs. Columbus (third period). Joseph Blandisi recorded 1g-2a-3pts, the seventh rookie in Devils’ history to record 3pts in a single period & the first since Brendan Morrison (Dec. 28, 1998 at Buffalo, 1g-2a, first period). – credit Elias Sports Bureau
  • HYNES TO JOIN TEAM USA AT WORLD CUP: Head Coach John Hynes was named an assistant coach for Team USA at the 2016 World Cup of Hockey, which is set to take place from Sept. 17-Oct. 1 in Toronto. Hynes, a native of Warwick, RI, will serve alongside Phil Housley, Mike Sullivan, Jack Capuano and Scott Gordon on Head Coach John Tortorella’s staff.
  • 600 GAMES FOR GREENE: Andy Greene skated in his 600th NHL game on Jan. 6 at Montreal, all of which have been played for the Devils. He became just the 16th player/sixth defenseman (also, Ken Daneyko, Scott Stevens, Scott Niedermayer, Colin White and Bruce Driver) in team history to reach the milestone.
  • BIG SAVES: Cory Schneider stopped David Desharnais’ penalty shot attempt on Jan. 6 at Montreal, has now saved 4/4 PS he’s faced this season (also, Jonathan Huberdeau Dec. 6 vs. Florida, Radim Vrbata Nov. 22 at Vancouver & Patrick Marleau Oct. 16 vs. San Jose) and has stopped 12/14 in his career. Schneider’s four PS faced ties New Jersey’s single-season record (Johan Hedberg, 2011-12). George Hainsworth holds the NHL record, having faced six PS for Toronto in 1934-35 (the first season for penalty shots in the NHL). -credit Elias Sports Bureau
  • D’MEN ARE OT HEROES: John Moore scored his second overtime goal of the season/his career on Jan. 2 vs. Dallas. Eight of the Devils’ last 14 OT game-winners have now been scored by a defenseman. Moore became the fourth d’man in franchise history to score two OT goals in a season, joining: Scott Niedermayer (4, 2001-02), Johnny Oduya (2, 2008-09) and Andy Greene (2, 2013-14). –credit Elias Sports Bureau
  • STAR STRUCK: Michael Cammalleri was named the NHL’s Third Star of the Week for the period ending Dec. 6. Cammalleri led the NHL with 4g-3a-7pts in four games, including three straight multiple-point games. He was joined by Anaheim’s John Gibson (First Star) and Nashville’s Shea Weber (Second). Cammalleri is the first Devil to be honored as a Star of the Week since Adam Henrique was named Third Star for the period ending Mar. 9, 2014 (5g).
  • WORKING OVERTIME: Kyle Palmieri scored his second OT goal of the season (also, Nov. 8 vs. Vancouver) & the fourth of his NHL career on Dec. 11 vs. Detroit. It was his third career OT goal at Prudential Center, having also scored the OT game winner for Anaheim vs. the Devils on Dec. 20, 2013.
  • HENRIQUE-ING HAVOC: Adam Henrique scored his second shorthanded goal of the season on Nov. 8 vs. Vancouver. Henrique’s 11 SHG since 2011-12 are the second-most among all NHL players during that span (Brad Marchand, 14). He’s also tied Stephane Richer and Doug Brown for third in Devils’ history behind John Madden (17) and Patrik Elias (16).
  • ONE FOR THE BOOKS: On Oct. 22 at Ottawa, the Devils won (5-4 SO) 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 a 5-4 SO win in Ottawa on Oct. 22, 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)
  • CORY’S NUMBER ONE: Cory Schneider ranks first with a 2.11 GAA (2nd, J. Quick, 2.17) and a .927 save % (2nd, H. Lundqvist & T. Rask .924) among goaltenders that have played in at least 100 games since the start of 2010-11.
  • THIS DAY IN DEVILS HISTORY: On February 23, 1994, seven different Devils scored in the New Jersey’s 7-2 victory over the Detroit Red Wings at Joe Louis Arena. Scott Stevens led the Devils with 1g-2a-3pts. Bobby Carpenter registered 1g-1a-2pts, including the GWG. Chris Terreri made 30 saves and earned the win in goal.

Milestone Watch

  • Adam Henrique – Needs 10pts for 200 in his NHL career.
  • Tuomo Ruutu –  Needs 3a for 200 in his NHL career.
  • Jordin Tootoo – Needs 5a to reach 100 in his NHL career.

Injuries

  • Michael Cammalleri (I.R., upper body, ten games missed) is out.
  • Patrik Elias (I.R., knee, 26 games missed) is out indefinitely.
  • Stefan Matteau (I.R., facial fracture, five games missed) is day-to-day.
  • Jiri Tlusty (I.R., upper body, 18 games missed) is out three-four months.
  • Total man-games lost to injury/illness: 193

Recent Transactions

  • Feb. 19 – Placed F Stefan Matteau on Injured Reserve, retroactive to Feb. 12. Activated D Jon Merrill from I.R.
  • Feb. 4 – Activated D John Moore from I.R.
  • Feb. 1 – Placed F Michael Cammalleri on I.R., retroactive to Jan. 26. Recalled F Joseph Blandisi, F Reid Boucher and D Seth Helgeson from Albany (AHL).

Game Resources

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