Newark, N.J. - The New Jersey Devils struggled mightily tonight against their new Eastern Conference foe, the Detroit Red Wings.
The Devils got off to a slow start, failing to record a shot on goal for the first half of the third period, but come 13:47 and two shots into the game, the Devils struck first.
Leading a power play rush, Andy Greene dropped the puck to Patrik Elias and crashed the net. Greene redirected a centering try by Elias to put the Devils on top.
From there on out the Wings took over. After scoreless through 39 minutes, Joakim Andersson put a rebound in a wide open net that Cory Schneider had no chance at stopping. The goal with 36 seconds left in the second dampened the Devils spirit and seemed to take them out of the game.
The Devils entered the third period only recording eight shots, but were clinging on to that tie game for life.
The Wings wiped out any hopes in the third with two goals, the first coming on Johan Franzen’s ninth of the year and the final goal from Tomas Tatar on the power play.
The power play came on a questionable illegal play by goalie call that was clearly proved wrong by replay. Cory Schneider supposedly played the puck outside of the trapezoid, but it was not even close.
The problem here was the referee that called the penalty was on the left side of the blue line, with absolutely no angle to the play. The puck was clearly about a foot inside the trapezoid. Both Schneider and Peter DeBoer were frustrated with the call and it ended the game.
Would the Devils have tied it up in the final minute and a half? Maybe not, but the point is that it ended their chances to pull their goalie and pressure the Wings. It was very frustrating. DeBoer expressed his frustration in the post game conference saying, “I did not see any foul on that play.” and neither did anyone else.
Regardless, the Devils dropped their third straight game. They will head across the Hudson River to take on the New York Rangers for the third time of the season.