It’s an interconference contest on the ice out in the Garden State between a couple of struggling teams. The Chicago Blackhawks are on the road as they travel to face the New Jersey Devils Friday night. Chicago was in action on the road Thursday night as they faced the Bruins in Beantown: they rallied for a 4-3 overtime win. New Jersey came up a 4-3 loser at home against Vegas Tuesday night in their previous game. The teams have split the last 10 meetings with the Blackhawks earning a 5-2 home victory in the most recent matchup on February 14, 2019.
Chicago Blackhawks Playing Second Game of Back to Back Road SetChicago was in action on the road against Boston in their last contest Thursday night but managed to rally and skate off with an improbable overtime victory. The Blackhawks are in the basement in the Central Division standings entering Thursday, 10 points behind the Jets for the final guaranteed playoff spot and 17 points back of the division-leading Blues. Chicago is 22nd in the league in scoring as they average 2.74 goals per game. The Blackhawks are 18th in the league in goals against by allowing 3.04 goals per contest. Chicago is 27th with the man advantage as they convert only 13.4 percent of their power play chances this season. The Blackhawks are 19th in shorthanded situations as they successfully kill off 79.8 percent of those situations this season.
In their last game, the Blackhawks were banged up and were unable to light the lamp in the loss. Chicago saw the shots even at 10 in the opening period and trailed 2-0 after 20 minutes of play. The second period saw the Blackhawks own an 11-9 edge in shots with neither team lighting the lamp, leaving the game 2-0 after 40 minutes of action. In the final period, Chicago owned a 17-11 edge in shots but were outscored 2-0 in the period to end up with the shutout loss. Corey Crawford made 26 saves in the loss for the Blackhawks, who owned a 38-30 edge in shots in the contest. With Robin Lehner getting the start Thursday night, expect Crawford to get the call between the pipes for this contest.
New Jersey Devils Seek First Win Under NasreddineNew Jersey fired coach John Hynes hours before faceoff of their game against Vegas Tuesday night and named Alain Nasreddine as the interim coach. Things still didn’t pan out as they blew another third-period lead to end up with a loss. The Devils entered Thursday in the basement of the Metropolitan Division, 15 points behind the Flyers for the final guaranteed playoff spot and 25 back of Washington for the division lead. New Jersey is tied for 27th in the league in lighting the lamp as they average 2.52 goals per contest. The Devils are a dismal 30th in the league in goals against as they surrender 3.63 goals per game. New Jersey is 28th in the league in power play success as they have converted only 13.1 percent of their chances with the man advantage: they are 13 of 99 thus far. The Devils are 24th in the league in penalty killing as they have been successful in 76.1 percent of their shorthanded situations this season.
Blackwood, Coleman, and Gusev are up for the #NJDevils Fan Favorite of the Month presented by @InvestorsBank for November.— New Jersey Devils (@NJDevils) December 4, 2019
The player with the most votes will be rewarded with a $500 check to his charity of choice!
🗳️ Cast your vote ➡️ https://t.co/dvEmt8QjVD pic.twitter.com/aOWqqOgrxa
In their last game, the Devils started off solidly but wilted late and it cost them the hockey game. New Jersey held a 17-7 edge in shots in the first period and took a 1-0 lead to the dressing room. Kyle Palmieri opened the scoring with his 10th of the year at 16:31 off assists from Damon Severson and Blake Coleman. In the second period, the Devils held an 11-10 edge in shots with both teams scoring once to leave New Jersey up 2-1 after 40 minutes. After Vegas tied the game up, Jesper Bratt scored his fifth of the year at 14:17 of the period. Severson and Pavel Zacha drew the assists on that goal. In the third period, the Devils were outshot 13-7 and outscored 3-1 to end up on the short end of the scoreboard. New Jersey gave up a natural hat trick to Jonathan Marchessault to fall behind 4-2 before they managed to get another goal on the board. Nico Hischier scored his fifth of the year at the 10:00 mark to get the Devils back within a goal. Taylor Hall and Palmieri drew the assists on that goal but they drew no closer. Mackenzie Blackwood made 26 saves for the Devils, who held a 35-30 edge in shots, in the contest.
The top trends for this contest according to Oddsshark.com:
- Blackhawks are 2-6 in their last eight overall
- Devils are 11-4 in their last 15 home games vs. Blackhawks