Game preview, New Jersey Devils @ Pittsburgh Penguins, 10/30/2021: Lines, how to watch
Who: The new Jesey Devils (3-2-0, 6 points) @ Pittsburgh penguins (3-2-2, 8 points)
When: 7:00 p.m. East
How to watch: AT&T Sportsnet locally in Pittsburgh, MSG + in the greater NY / NJ area, ESPN +
Opponent’s track: If you think the Pens haven’t played much to open the season, the Devils come in tonight with a five-game record and have only played once this week (5-3 loss to Calgary on Tuesday) . NJ got off to a good start with three wins, but they ran up against struggling opponents (CHI, SEA) or another considered not too good (BUF). Jersey also only have one regulation win, which means they could easily have lost a few points as well. The Devils have also lost by multiple goals against the top two teams they’ve played (WSH, CGY), and haven’t played a single game on the road yet, until tonight anyway.
Pens Path Ahead: Pens may use more days to allow names like Rust, Letang, Carter, and Crosby to regain their full strength. And they have a little break now, with four days off after tonight. Thursday is the next game against the Flyers, and then next Saturday (November 6), the Pens see the Minnesota Wild come to town in what will (finally) be the last home game of this eight-game season that started on the 16th. / 10.
Season Series: The Pens and Devils have a little home action next December 19th (@NJD) and then return to Pittsburgh on December 21st. It will be a good reminder of last season’s “baseball style” series to play the same opponent multiple times in a row. After that, the Pens return to Newark on February 24 and that will be it, as the Division’s opponents will meet only four times in 82 games this season.
Random fact: Pittsburgh has averaged 34.7 shots on goal per game so far this season, the fourth-highest total in the NHL.
Counterpart of the SBN team: Head over to All About the Jersey for the latest Devils news.
—2020 first-round pick Dawson Mercer celebrated his 20th anniversary earlier this week. He celebrated his final teenage days making his NHL debut and starting his career with four points in five games. Mercer arrived in the NHL at a somewhat unexpected time, but the Devils were happy to welcome him as the youngster entered the team with a wonderful training camp.
—Pavel Zacha’s had a “what do we have here?” At 24, it’s already Zacha’s sixth full season in the NHL. He’s only scored 54 goals in the first 316 games, but with four goals in five this season, he may be getting more comfortable and finally finding his footing in the league.
Who is not :
– The Jack Hughes star’s turn, unfortunately, has been on the back burner for a while. The former number one pick started the year on fire and looked like an elite ascendant now in his third season, but suffered a dislocated shoulder. Supposedly, we don’t think it’s too bad, but it will be another five weeks before he’s re-evaluated and being starless is still a bummer.
—Scott Wedgewood is one of the worst performing goalies in the NHL today and has been poor again this year. The situation for goalies in general is down in New Jersey when they saw Wedgewood and Nico Daws (who? … exactly) play in four games combined with five as Mackenzie Blackwood looks to join Jonathan Bernier as options goalkeeper.
—PK Subban seems to be a shell of himself now, not recording any points so far in the season. He has also become a very dangerous and reckless player, basically openly out of control opponents this year, having already beaten Ryan Reaves in the preseason and Milan Lucic in the last game. Subban has been fined up to $ 5,000 for the latter, and finally seems to be on the NHL’s radar for these dirty incidents.
Thursday practice lines
Pavel Zacha – Nico Hischier – Tomas Tatar
Yegor Sharangovich – Michael McLeod – Jimmy Vesey
Andreas Johnsson – Dawson Mercer – Jesper Bratt
Marian Studenic – Frédéric Gauthier – Janne Kuokkanen
Ryan Graves / Dougie Hamilton
Jonas Siegenthaler / PK Subban
Ty Smith / Damon Severson
Probable starting goalkeeper: Jonathan Bernier
Grooves : Mason Geertsen, Christian Jaros
IR: Jack Hughes, Mackenzie Blackwood, Miles Wood
Discreet player profile
Readers of last year’s Pensburgh game preview may recall how warm this space is for Sharangovich and Kuokkanen, so we’re going to broaden their profile a bit for this year.
Damon Severson is another player who has been hanging around for some time, as the former Devils second-round pick in 2012 with now 490 career NHL games to his name. At 27 now, he’s a strong NHL defenseman with an ideal height (6’2, 210), skating ability and offensive instincts for jumping and supporting the game.
Severson has done well against the Pens, in 31 career games against Pittsburgh he has 2G + 13A. Those 13 assists are the most he’s recorded against a single NHL opponent, and the 15 points equalize Philly for the team he’s scored the most against.
Severson has gained some support with the squad strengthening and catching Hamilton and Graves this offseason, which should only further help Severon not have to play such a critical role for the squad and be isolated with more. help than he has had in the past.
And now for the pens.
Jake Guentzel – Sidney Crosby – Evan Rodrigues
Jason Zucker – Jeff Carter – Kasperi Kapanen
Zach Aston-Reese – Teddy Blueger – Brock McGinn
Drew O’Connor – Brian Boyle – Danton Heinen
Brian Dumoulin / John Marino
Mike Matheson / Chad Ruhwedel
Marcus Pettersson / Mark Friedman or Juuso Riikola
Probable starting goalkeeper: Tristan Jarry
Grooves : Sam lafferty (healthy), Dominik Simon (healthy)
List of non-COVID lists: Kris letang
RI: Evgeni Malkin (knee), Bryan Rust (weekly injury)
– Does it really happen this time? Carter and Crosby are both officially “game time decisions” for this game, and it’s hardly a decision to be made unless there are last minute bumps in the road.
“Farewell, Kasper Bjorkqvkist, who has returned to Wilkes without any NHL games as the forwards return to a better place from a health standpoint.
– If the training lines hold, it will be O’Connor who will stay in the lineup against Simon and Lafferty. It’s a nice reward for a good start and an encouraging move from Mike Sullivan to play a younger player with more advantages than the older options.
—Juuso Riikola’s teasing continues, the Finn practicing on the second power play unit yesterday and taking some line rushes with Marcus Pettersson. It feels like Sullivan isn’t exactly thrilled with Mark Friedman as an All-Game Player right now (and Friedman has played 6 of the team’s 7 games so far due to injury / COViD to others). It may also be worth pointing out that Friedman was on the ice for two of Calgary’s four goals in the last game. But will Sullivan really be looking to take two left shots on his third pair? The unfolding of the practice suggests that Sullivan is considering it.
—What would be the most appropriate result of “Riikola and the Pens” for this saga: Riikola enters tonight, plays decently well, but is a good scratch in the next game for unknown and obscure training reasons? Or Riikola gets injured on his third shift and ends up with an injury week to week?
It’s time for Jake to shake off the early season slump
One player who should smile like the proverbial butcher’s dog today is Jake Guentzel if his cross is back. As has been the case, Guentzel has done a lot of damage over the years against the Devils. From the Pens PR service:
Jake Guentzel enters tonight’s game with a nine-game scoring streak against the New Jersey Devils (6G-9A), which is also his longest active points streak against a team:
Point Streak GA PTS Team
New Jersey 9 Games 6 9 15
Vancouver 8 Games 9 5 14
Florida 5 Games 3 4 7
Winnipeg 4 Games 2 3 5
Eight teams 3 games N / AN / AN / A
Throughout his career, he has 25 points (10G-15A) in 21 games against the Devils. His 10 goals, 15 assists and 25 points are all his highest totals against any team.
Guentzel was pretty hard on himself with comments after the last game about playing better and producing more. The forward scored a goal in his first game of the season, but hasn’t scored one since. Guentzel has recorded three assists in the last five games, possibly a new center and seeing the Devils will be exactly what the doctor ordered to put the No.59 on track.