New Jersey Devils (39-18-6, 84 pts) at Pittsburgh Penguins (33-19-9, 75 pts)
Penguins 5, Devils 4 on February 16th in New Jersey
Devils 3, Penguins 0 on December 26th in New Jersey
Devils 5, Penguins 2 on December 1st in New Jersey
Penguins 4, Devils 2 on October 25th in Pittsburgh
Devils 2, Penguins 1 on October 18th in Pittsburgh
The Pens play the Devils three times in the next nine games. The Devils play the Pens three times in their next seven games. What does that mean for the Pens? It means that if they have any serious ambitions about the division title (and the second seed in the playoffs), now is the time to do something about it. That all starts with this game against the Devils.
Marc-Andre Fleury will be back in net for the Penguins. He hasn't had a complete game since Tuesday, February 6th against Nashville. That seems like a long time ago. He'll need to have a complete game against the Devils.
The power play for the Devils has been ice-cold, managing only one goal over the last 4 games (15 chances). The Pens, on the other hand, have a power play goal in five straight games. On the PK, the Pens have been Devil-like in their ability to stay out of the box recently. They've yielded only 12 chances over their last four games. Anytime you can allow only three power plays per game on average, you're doing something right.
The Devils actually had Scott Clemmensen play a game on Sunday, so you know that Brodeur is going to be well rested, and probably pissed that he didn't get to play. Let's hope the Pens can get to him early and get inside his head a bit.
This game needs to be the opposite of the loss against Tampa Bay. If the Pens come out flat and allow a quick goal or two, then they'll have a really hard time coming back. A two-goal deficit to Jersey is like a 4 goal deficit to most anyone else.
Devils blog - 2 Man Advantage
They have a nice roundup of the trade deadline activity. Check it out!
This one will be tough. I'm looking for a gutsy performance from the Pens now that they really need it.
Let's Go Pens!