New Jersey Devils: Week Ahead (2/1-2/8)


Devils face tough week ahead with two Metro opponents.

This is a new segment to Pucks and Pitchforks, where I will preview the week ahead of games. Since this is the first week, I won’t do a review of last week but you can be expecting that next week.

The quite successful All Star game is over and they playoff push begins for the Devils. The Devils will play three games this week, taking on the Rangers at home, in Toronto, and the round out the week at home against Washington on Saturday afternoon. Two Metropolitan games and a prime opportunity to jump up in the standings.

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Rangers @ Devils: 2/2/16

The Devils will open this week with the cross river rival in the New York Rangers. The Devils and the Rangers will meet for the second time this season. In the first meeting, the Devils entered the game on a 4 game losing streak. Their record was 0-3-1, and they were in troubled waters early in that game. The Rangers jumped out to a 1-0 lead. Just two minutes into the second, Adam Henrique scored and tied up the game at one. The game turned into a defensive stalemate and went to overtime. In overtime Rick Nash carried the puck to the net for the Rangers, and Andy Greene stopped the puck from going over the goal line. With under two minutes left in the game, the Devils got a break and had a 2 on 1 and Adam Henrique passed across to Lee Stempniak who finished for the Devils first win of the season. Looking ahead to tonight, the Devils enter tonight in ninth in the eastern conference with the same amount of points as the Penguins, and 4 points behind the Rangers. A win will go a long way for New Jersey in this one.

Devils @ Maple Leafs: 2/4/16

The second game of the week has the Devils taking on Toronto from the Air Canada Centre. In the first meeting of the season the Devils went to a 1-0 lead very early in the game on a Lee Stempniak on the powerplay. Later in the period, the Leafs would tie the game at 1. In the second, the Devils and Leafs traded goals again, and nobody scored in the third or overtime. The Devils ended up losing in the shootout. On Wednesday, the Devils need to take 2 points here anyway possible. If this team is going to take a shot at the playoffs (read my article here about Devils playoff possibilities) this game is almost a must win. They need to take points from the teams below them in the standings.

Capitals @ Devils: 2/6/16

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports
Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports /

The third and final game of the week sees the Devils take on Washington in a matinee game at the Rock. In the last contest the Devils played the Caps in there second game of the season. The game opened up with Washington scoring twice. The Devils, quickly answered with 2 goals of their own. The second period went scoreless, and then the Caps dominated Jersey in the third outscoring them 3-1 but having three unanswered goals handing the Devils their second loss of the season. Looking forward to Saturday, this will probably be the toughest Devils game of the week. The Devils have to come out of the gate ready for that one or it can get ugly early.

I would like to see the Devils take 4 points this week. It is very important that they take care of business tonight and Thursday. Saturday will be a little tougher but if the Devils can get four points this week, they will be in good position going into next week.

Let me know what you think on Twitter @chrikayy89.

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