Game Preview: Devils at Wild

By: David Kolb

NEW JERSEY DEVILS (18-18-9) @ MINNESOTA WILD (28-9-5)

SECOND AND FINAL…

Tonight the Devils wrap up their season series with the Minnesota Wild at Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, after edging the Wild in 2-1 in overtime in their first matchup on Oct. 22 in Newark. The Devils close out their four-game road trip tonight, hoping to end it on a good note, after winning their past two games including Sunday’s 2-1 overtime win over the Vancouver Canucks. The Wild meanwhile, have reeled off four straight wins, including winning 3-2 over the Blackhawks in Chicago on Sunday, and have catapulted into first place in the Western Conference.

HALL PACING DEVILS

First-year Devils’ forward, Taylor Hall scored the game-winning goal at 1:28 of overtime Sunday in Vancouver, while leading all Devils with four shots on net. Hall is now tied with Travis Zajac for the team lead in points with 28 and has recorded points (two goals, one assist) in three straight games.

SCHNEIDER BETWEEN FAMILIAR PIPES

Devils’ goalie, Cory Schneider will get the start again tonight after stopping 21 of 22 shots and improving to 13-14-7 Sunday in Vancouver. In the first matchup with the Wild this season, Schneider stopped 28 of 29 shots to gain the win and enters tonight’s tilt with a 2.68 goals against average with a .910 save percentage.

SUTER SENSATIONAL

Wild captain, and top defenseman, Ryan Suter has been sensational this season, anchoring his club to the top of the Western Conference. He has points in three straight games (one goal, three assists), and has been a lock-down defender in his own zone throughout the season. In 42 games, Suter has six goals and 26 points, while earning an incredible plus-28 rating.

ZAJAC QUIETLY PRODUCING

Travis Zajac recorded his team-leading 19th assist on Hall’s overtime goal Sunday vs. Vancouver, and finished the game a plus-2. Zajac played in the 743rd game of his career, tying him with Colin White for 10th in Devils history. He now has nine goals and 28 points this season and is now tied with Tyler Hall for the Devils’ club lead in points.