New Jersey Devils (9-3 SU, 6-6 PL, 8-3-1 O/U) vs Calgary Flames (7-6 SU, 5-8 PL, 5-7-1 O/U)
When: 9:05 PM EDT, Sunday, November 5, 2017
Where: Scotiabank Saddledome in Calgary, Alberta
Lines: Calgary -161/ New Jersey +145
The Metro Division meets the Pacific Division this evening as the New Jersey Devils duke it out with the Calgary Flames at Scotiabank Saddledome in Calgary, Alberta. The Devils enter this contest off a 6-3 road loss at the hands of the Oilers, while the Flames come in off a 2-1 OT win over the Penguins at home. Goalie Probables: The Devils will be sending out Cory Schneider in this one and he will be opposed by Mike Smith.
Devils Suffer First Road Loss
The New Jersey Devils are off to a very nice start to their year as they are currently 9-3 and in first place in the Metro Division. They had been a perfect 5-0 on the road, but a loss to Edmonton took care of that as they fell to the Oilers by a score of 6-3. They are still 5-1 on the road after going just 12-29 away from home last year. Scoring in the loss to the Oilers was Jonathan Toews, which was his 5th of the year, Taylor Hall, which was his 4th of the year and Brian Gibbons, which was his 6th of the year. Taking the loss against the Oilers was Cory Schneider, who allowed five goals on 41 shot attempts. He is now 6-2 with a 3.09 GAA and a .916 save percentage on the year overall, 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 GAA on the road and 23-28 with a 2.27 GAA during the month of November, plus he has gone 36-33 with a 2.24 GAA against the Pacific Division, while against the Flames in his career he has gone 5-6 with a 2.26 GAA.
New Jersey enters this contest ranked 5th in the league in scoring at 3..58 gpg, while also ranking 25th in shots taken (30.1 spg) and 5th in power play conversions, converting on 26.8% 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 19th in goals allowed, giving up 3.08 gpg, while also ranking 30th in shots allowed (35.1 spg) and 21st in penalty kill, allowing teams to convert on 20.4% of their chances.
Smith Has Been Strong Of Late
The Calgary Flames have had very little offense to start their year, so they will have to rely on their play at the other end of the ice and right now they have been getting very good play from Mike Smith, who was horrible for Arizona last year. The Flames come in off a 2-1 win in OT over the Penguins and Smith stopped 43 of the 44 shots that he faced in the game. He has now allowed two goals or less in six of his last seven games, while on the year he has gone 7-5 with a 2.19 GAA and a .936 save percentage, including 3-4 with a 2.51 GAA and a .920 save percentage here at home. In his career, he has gone 119-111 with a 2.48 GAA in his home games and 41-42 with a 2.56 GAA during the month of November, plus he is 16-27 with a 2.71 GAA against the Metro Division, while against the Devils in his career he has gone 4-5 with a 2.84 GAA. He gives them a good chance to win the game every night, but for them to make a serious run at a postseason berth. Scoring in the win over the Penguins was Sean Monahan, which was his 7th of the year and Mark Giordano, whose 2nd of the year came in OT to win the game.
The Flames come into this game ranked 31st in the league in scoring at 2.23 gpg, while also ranking 15th in shots taken (31.7 spg) and 24th in power play conversions, converting on 15.2% of their chances. At the defensive end of the ice, they have been very average as they rank 6th in goals allowed, giving up 2.62 gpg, while also ranking 26th in shots allowed (33.9 spg) and 24th in penalty kill, allowing teams to convert on 22.0% of their chances.
New Jersey is:
- 20-42 in their last 62 games playing on one days rest
- 15-37 in their last 52 vs. a team with a winning record
- 10-1 in their last 11 games playing on two days rest
- 27-12 in their last 39 after scoring two goals or less in their previous game
The New Jersey Devils have gotten off to a very good start and they have gone 5-1 on the road so far. Their offense has been much-improved so far and will be taking on a Calgary team that has had their issues scoring this year. Still, I feel the Flames have an edge in the crease especially with how Smith has been playing of late. The offense will come for the Flames and the Devils have allowed 3.08 gpg on the year. I look for Calgary to grab a big home win here, especially knowing that the Flames are 5-1 their last six games in this series.