New Jersey Devils (16-8-4) at New York Rangers (15-11-2)
7PM ET • Madison Square Garden • 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 at 4:45 PM.
LAST GAME: DEC. 8 – NEW JERSEY 3 vs. COLUMBUS 5
New Jersey fell, 3-5, to Columbus in the second half of their home-and-home set with both teams’ gaining 2PTS (1-1-0). Columbus (37PTS) overtook the divison-lead from New Jersey (36PTS). The Devils and Blue Jackets were tied, 3-3, after 40 minutes of play. The Devils are 1-2-2 this season when the score is tied after two periods.
Last night’s contest was also the first of New Jersey’s seventh of 16 sets of back-to-back games in 2017-18. The club is 5-2-0 in first games and will look to improve to 5-2-0 in second games, 4-2-0, tonight at NYR. The Devils were out-shot, 24-28, including 10-5 in the final period. New Jersey has not had more shots than their opponent in six games (Nov. 24 vs. VAN). NJD’s power play was 0-4 tonight. It was the third consecuvtive game where New Jersey did not convert on the man-advantage (0-8). Despite the recent dip in production, the Devils are still ranked 5th in the NHL with a 27.27% success rate at home (12th overall, 20.45%).
Washington (37PTS) also moved ahead of the Devils (36PTS) for second place in the Metropolitan Division (WSH 4New Jersey is currently in third place in the Metropolitan Division. Six of the eight top teams in the East are separated by just 5PTS.
Cory Schneider started in net for New Jersey. He fell to 11-6-3, surrendering five goals on 28 shots (.786 save%).
Brian Boyle opened the scoring, 8:29 into the first period, to give New Jersey a 1-0 lead. (assists: J. Hayes, M. Wood). It was his fifth goal of the season and his fifth point in the last eight games (. The assist was Jimmy Hayes’ first point since Nov. 11 vs. FLA (1A). He had been a scratch in eight of the 11 team-games since Nov. 11. Miles Wood’s assist was his 12th point of the season. He has 12 points (6G-6A) in 27 games this season, which is just five points shy of his 2016-17 roookie season total of 17 (8G-9A, 60GP).
Marcus Johansson tallied New Jersey’s second goal, to help the club carry 2-0 lead into the second period. The first-year-Devil has points in back-to-back games (1G-1A) for the second time this season. He needs 3PTS to reach 300 in his NHL career. Stefan Noesen had the sole assist of Johansson’s goal. The Plano, TX native has three points (1G-2A) over the past two games, Dec. 5-8, since playing RW on the line with Johansson and Travis Zajac.
Blake Coleman notched the Devils’ third and final goal of the evening to tie the game 3-3 with just 20 seconds remaining in the second period. It was his first goal since Nov. 7 vs. STL (13 games). Brian Gibbons and Steven Santini had the helpers on Coleman’s goal.
TONIGHT’S GAME AT NEW YORK
Tonight is the second of four meetings between the Hudson River rivals in 2017-18. The Devils defeated the Rangers, 3-2, on Oct. 14 at Madison Square Garden in their first matchup. The clubs will meet again in 12 days at Prudential Center before their seasin-series finale, April 3 in New Jersey.
On Oct. 14, the Rangers held New Jersey to a season-low, 19 shots on goal. However, the Devils dominated the second period, out-shooting the Rangers, 12-3. Keith Kinkaid made his first start of the 2017-18 campaign and stopped 29 of 31 shots (.935 save%) in his first career start at The Garden. Rookie defenseman Will Butcher tallied with two assists, including the primary assist on Drew Stafford’s power play, game-winner. That night Butcher became the first rookie defenseman in NHL history to record at least eight assists in his first five career games. *credit NHL PR. Nico Hischier also assisted on the goal.
The Devils enter tonight’s game on the tail-end of their seventh of 16 sets of back-to-back games in 2017-18. Last night, New Jersey lost, 3-5, vs. Columbus in the second of a home-and-home series. The club is 5-2-0 in firsts and is 4-2-0 in second games of back-to-backs. Yesterday was just New Jersey’s fourth game against an inter-division opponent; they are 2-2-0 (2-0-0 road) vs. the Metropolitan Division and are 9-3-2 (6-0-1 road) vs. Eastern Conference opponents.
- MUELLER (IR, retro. to Nov. 12, fractured clavicle, 11GP missed).
- PALMIERI (IR, retro to Nov. 20, broken right foot, 8GP missed).
Man-Games Lost to Injury/Illness: 90
SCHNEIDER – 100TH win w/ NJD, Dec. 5 at CBJ.
HALL – 100GP w/ NJ, Dec. 8 vs. CBJ.
LOVEJOY – 2GP for 100 w/ NJ
BOYLE – 2G for 100 NHL / 8PIM for 500 NHL
JOHANSSON – 3PTS for 300 NHL / 8A for 200 NHL
GIBBONS – 6GP for 100 NHL
VATANEN – 7A for 100 NHL
ZACHA – 8GP for 100 NHL/NJ
COACH HYNES – 8GC 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-round pick in the 2018 NHL Draft. He made his Devils’ debut, Dec. 1 at COL and led all New Jersey skaters with 23:13.
Fast Facts About Sami:
– This is his fifth full NHL season.
– Won Bronze Medal with Finland at 2014 Winter Olympics.
– 2012-13 AHL All-Rookie Team/AHL First All-Star Team
– Grew up in Jyvaskyla, Finland, where he spends his summers.
– He and his wife, Essi, were married this past summer 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, 10-3-2, ranks first overall in the NHL. 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.
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).
HE’S BEING A BRATT
Rookie Jesper Bratt, New Jersey’s sixth-round choice (162nd overall) in the 2016 NHL Draft, set a new franchise record for the most-points in the first two games of his NHL career with 3G-2A-5PTS. In addition, he is one of only five NHL players in the past 17 seasons to record five points through his first two NHL games.
- Others were: Radim Vrbata (2001-02), Brent Seabrook (2005-06), Anze Kopitar (2006-07), Vladimir Tarasenko (2012-13)
credit NHL PR
HALL OF A START
Taylor Hall leads New Jersey with 29 points in 29 GP this season. His 1.03 points-per-game ranks 19th in the NHL, which puts him on pace for a career-best, 85 points.
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, 10 others) with two shorthanded goals this season.
*as of Dec. 9
- Nathan Bastian – AHL – 12/6
- Mackenzie Blackwood – AHL – 12/9 – HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!
- BRIAN BOYLE – 12/18
- Yaroslav Dyblenko – AHL – 12/28
NJD by NATION (*most NHL/^fewest NHL): as of Dec. 7
- USA – 14*
- Canada – 5^ (tie; NYR)
- Switzerland – 1
- Sweden – 1
- Czech Republic – 1
- Finland – 1