Thursday evening NHL action and the Metro Division will square off with the Atlantic Division as the New Jersey Devils grapple with the Toronto Maple Leafs at Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Ontario. The Devils enter this game off a 7-5 win over Chicago on the road, while the Leafs are off a 4-1 road win over Boston. Goalie Probables: The Devils will be sending out Cory Schneider and the Maple Leafs will counter with Frederik Andersen.
The Offense Had Fun In Chicago
The New Jersey Devils have not been known for their offense the last few years, but that has changed this year and as a result, the Devils are currently in first place in the Metro Division. They have needed their offense because their play in the crease has been less than stellar this year. They come in off a game in Chicago and they allowed five goals in that game, but the good news is that they scored seven as the offense has a bit of fun against Corey Crawford. The offense has struggled some of late as they had scored just five goals in their previous three games, but it broke back out in this one. Miles Wood led the attack with his first career hat trick and he now has six goals on the year. Also scoring were Andy Greene (2nd), Nico Hischier (3rd), Taylor Hall (6th) and Brian Gibbons (8th). The Devils have gone 6-2 on the road. Grabbing the win against the Blackhawks was Keith Kinkaid, who stopped 39 of the 44 shots that he faced in the game to improve to 4-2 with a 3.26 GAA and a .899 save percentage on the year. Cory Schneider will be back in the crease for this one and he has gone 7-4 with a 2.79 GAA and a .922 save percentage on the year, including 3-1 with a 3.00 GAA and a .921 save percentage on the road. In his career, he has gone 68-98 with a 2.46 GSAA on the road and 24-30 with a 2.25 GAA during the month of November, plus he is 33-43 with a 2.34 GAA against the Atlantic Division, while against the Maple Leafs he has gone 7-4 with a 2.16 GAA.
New Jersey enters this contest ranked 5th in the league in scoring at 3.47 gpg, while also ranking 27th in shots taken (29.8 spg) and 48th in power play conversions, converting on 25.0% of their chances. At the defensive end of the ice, they have been a bit below average in the early going as they come in ranked 21st in goals allowed, giving up 3.12 gpg, while also ranking 30th in shots allowed (35.5 spg) and 17th in penalty kill, allowing teams to convert on 19.7% of their chances.
Leafs Take Two From Boston
The Toronto Maple Leafs were one of the surprise teams in the league last year and they have improved this year. They did have a stretch where they struggled, but they have shaken that off to win their last four games in a row, including taking both ends of a home-and-home series against the Bruins in their last two games. They won on Friday night by a score of 3-2 in OT at home and then followed that up with a 4-1 win in Beantown on Saturday. Grabbing the win in the 2nd game was Curtis McElhinney, who stopped 39 of the 40 shots that he faced in the game to improve to 1-1 with a 3.05 GAA and a .910 save percentage on the year. Frederik Andersen will get the nod in this one and he has gone 10-6 with a 3.25 GAA and a .901 save percentage on the year overall, including 6-3 with a 3.64 GAA and a .887 save percentage here at home. In his career, he has gone 62-35 with a 2.47 GAA in his home games and 23-17 with a 2.67 GAA during the month of November, while against the Metro Division he has gone 25-14 with a 2.87 GAA, including 3-1 with a 2.51 GAA against the Devils. Scoring for the leafs in the 4-1 win was Mitchell Marner, which was his 2nd of the year, James van Riemsdyk, which was his 9th of the year, Morgan Rielly, which was his 3rd and Patrick Marleau, which was his 8th
Toronto has been very good on offense so far as they come in ranked 2nd in the league in scoring at 3.74 gpg, while also ranking 20th in shots taken (30.9 spg) and 7th in power play conversions, converting on 23.1% of their chances. At the defensive end of the ice, they have been poor so far as they come in ranked 25th in goals allowed, giving up 3.32 gpg, while also ranking 23rd in shots allowed (33.1 spg) and 15th in penalty kill, allowing teams to convert on 19.4% of their chances.
New Jersey is:
- The Over is 7-1-2 in their last 10 games playing on three or more days rest
- The Over is 12-3-2 in their last 17 games following a win
- The Over is 9-3-1 in their last 13 games following a win
- The Over is 6-2-2 in their last 10 home games
The New Jersey Devils are currently atop the Metro Division, while the <aple Leafs come in having won their last four games in a row. This should be a good game. The Devils just hung seven goals on the Blackhawks, while the Leafs have scored four goals in four of their last five games and they have averaged 3.90 gpg at home. The Devils have averaged a strong 4.50 gpg on the road the Leafs have allowed 3.60 gpg here at home. These teams met earlier in the year and nine goals were scored in this game. This one should see at least eight.