NEW JERSEY DEVILS (2-2-1) vs ARIZONA COYOTES (1-4-0)
The Devils won their second straight home game on Saturday to improve to 2-2-1 this season, and 2-0-0 at Prudential Center. Last season the Devils defeated the Coyotes at “The Rock,” winning 3-2 in overtime behind a 3-point night from center Travis Zajac.
The Devils have successfully killed 16 of 17 (94.1%) shorthanded situations through the first five games of the season. They rank fourth amongst all NHL teams in penalty killing, while the Coyotes have been converting 11% (ranked 23rd) of the time with the extra man.
FINDING CAMMALLERI’S GROOVE
Michael Cammalleri has only two assists in five games this season, however, he has more points against the Coyotes (19 goals and 22 assists for 41 points) than any other NHL club. Cammalleri has seven points (four goals, three assists) in his last four games vs. Arizona.
HALL OF A MATCHUP
Offseason acquisition Taylor Hall leads the Devils with three goals this season and will skate against a familiar foe in Arizona, who he gained familiarity with playing in the Pacific Division. Hall has had success against the Coyotes, tallying eight goals with 12 assists for 20 points in 22 career meetings.
The Devils’ top two lines should expect to see Coyotes defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson as often as possible. Ekman-Larsson has become one of the top NHL backliners and is averaging an impressive 26:46 of ice time, with two goals and 15 in five games.