When: 7 p.m. ET; Pregame show at 6:30 p.m. ET
Where: Prudential Center, Newark, N.J.
Media: TV - MSG, NHL-Network; Radio - WFAN (660 AM or 101.9 FM)
Stats & Notes (From Devils PR)
- Despite the 2-1 shootout loss last night at Philadelphia, New Jersey has points in three straight games (2-0-1) for the first time since a five-game win streak February 3-10.
- The Devils are looking to extend season-high (tie, Feb. 5-9) three-game winning streak at Prudential Center.
- New Jersey has out shot its opponent in nine consecutive games (265-210).
- the Devils fell to 3-8-4 on the year when allowing the first goal. New Jersey is 10-1-2 when scoring first this season.
- David Clarkson snapped a 13-game goal-scoring drought with his team-leading 11th of the year yesterday.
- Johan Hedberg (21 saves + 1/3 SO) tied his career-high 11th consecutive start last night (also Nov. 24-Dec. 16, 2002).
A New Top Line: Andrei Loktionov's injury will keep him out of action tonight, and the Devils will have to break up their lines after FINALLY gaining some continuity. Loktionov injured himself during Friday's game in Philadelphia, which is really a tough break considering how well he'd been playing.
The Devils didn't skate this morning, so any line pairings would simplybe a guess. We'll have to wait for warmups to see what Pete DeBoer decides to do with his lines tonight.
Worst to First: At this time last year, the Montreal Canadiens were toiling through one of their franchise's worst seasons ever. A year later, les Habitantes are back in a big way. The Canadiens enter Saturday tied with Pittsburgh for most points in the Eastern Conference, 40. Montreal appears content to play for Francophone coach Mike Therrien, and Carey Price is having one of his best seasons.
Beware of Montreal's top line, especially their leading scorer Max Pacioretty. The New Canaan, Conn. native has five career points against New Jersey-- including his first NHL goal on Jan 2, 2009. "Patches" also has points in two of Montreal's last three games.
Home Cooking: As you see above, the Devils' play at Prudential Center's been very good this year. New Jersey sports a 9-3-2 home record entering Saturday night's game-- the Devils' 20 home points coincidentally puts them in a second-place tie with Montreal. Ottawa's 21 home points are the most in the East.
The Devils expect another sellout, with an international-television audience tuning in on CBC and NHL Network. I'd look for the Devils to bring a high-energy game, even playing for the second time in two nights.