After a flat performance last night in Minnesota, the New Jersey Devils make their first trip to Canada in almost two years looking for a quick turnaround against the Winnipeg Jets.
Tale of the Tape
Record: 9-8-4 (22 points, 6th in Metro)
The Opponent: Winnipeg Jets (10-8-4) – FHN Site: The Airport Lounge
Puckdrop: 8:00 PM ET
Venue: Canada Life Center
Expected Goaltenders: Jonathan Bernier (4-3-1) vs. Connor Hellebuyck (7-6-4)
Television Broadcasts: MSG+, TSN3
The Jets are struggling mightily as of late winning only once in their last seven games. With their most recent outing being 1-0 loss at the hands of the Arizona Coyotes, Winnipeg finds themselves struggling to find answers.
The Jets heavily outshot the Coyotes 46-15 in their most recent game but could not solve goaltender Karel Vejmelka. The problem lies in goal scoring as Winnipeg has only scored nine times in their last seven games which is not going to win you many games. The Jets currently sit 24th in the league in goals scored per game with 2.68.
The Jets will be turning back to goaltender Connor Hellebuyck for tonight’s game. In his last start, Hellebuyck stopped 14 Coyotes’ shots in the loss. The 2020 Vezina Trophy winner carries a 7-6-4 record into tonight’s matchup with 2.60 GAA and .918 save percentage.
New Jersey Devils
Once again, the Devils fell victim to another flat start in their loss to the Minnesota Wild. New Jersey got outworked in every facet of the game as Minnesota easily won 5-2.
The Devils need to put these slow starts in the rearview mirror if they plan on being successful in Winnipeg. New Jersey has fallen behind in six of their last seven games and are 2-4-1 in that span.
New Jersey will be turning to Jonathan Bernier tonight. So far this season, Bernier has a 4-3-1 record with a 2.55 GAA and .914 save percentage in nine games this season. This will be his first start since a November 26 loss to the Nashville Predators.
Player to Watch: Tomas Tatar
Tomas Tatar is finally starting to come around for New Jersey. The 31-year-old forward signed a two-year contract with the team in the offseason with that intention on being a top-six scoring option for the club. After a rough start to the season, Tatar has a point in five of his last six games including a goal last night.
The team has been playing poorly outside of Tatar and his teammates need to be inspired by his play. Expect Tatar to keep his hot streak going tonight and provide New Jersey with some offense.