By David Kolb
BOSTON BRUINS (20-15-4) @ NEW JERSEY DEVILS (14-16-7)
SECOND OF THREE
Tonight, the Devils begin the New Year facing off against the Boston Bruins for the second of three meetings this season. The Bruins took the first game, 2-1, on Oct. 20, and the teams will wrap up their season series on Mar. 4 at TD Garden in Boston. The Devils will look to get back to their winning ways in New Jersey after beginning the season so well on home ice but they have lost four out of their past five games in Newark, including losing 6-2 on Saturday to the Washington Capitals. Meanwhile, the Bruins come to New Jersey trying to make in three in a row following a back-to-back sweep of the Buffalo Sabres.
PALMIERI BACK AT IT
Kyle Palmieri has found his scoring touch, which netted him 30 goals last season, as he has tallied three goals in his past five games. Saturday against Washington he scored the Devils’ opening goal (power play) giving him seven goals and 13 assists for 20 points in 35 games this season.
Boston’s leading scorer Brad Marchand picked up assists in each of the two games against the Sabres in their back-to-back set, and now has a goal and three assists in his past five games. He’ll have to be closely watched tonight, as he scored a goal and an assist vs. the Devils in their first meeting, and enters tonight’s tilt with 10 goals and 21 assists for 31 points in 39 games.
CAMMALLERI LOOKING FOR 100
Michael Cammalleri has not lit-the-lamp since Dec. 3, but he’s had great success against the Bruins throughout his career. In 21 career games vs. the Bruins, Cammalleri has seven goals and 10 assists for 17 points. This season No. 13 has nine goals and 10 assists for 19 points and sits one point shy of reaching 100 points with the Devils.
Forward Ryan Spooner has quietly become one of the Bruins’ top threats as he extended his scoring streak to five games (three goals and four assists) after picking up a helper in Saturday’s 3-1 win vs. Buffalo. Spooner takes the ice tonight with seven goals and 12 assists for 19 points this season.