The New Jersey Devils will head on the road to the Scotiabank Saddledome on Tuesday evening as they get set to take on the Calgary Flames.
The Flames enter Tuesday’s matchup with a slim one-point lead over the San Jose Sharks in the Pacific Division race after compiling 91 points through their first 69 games of the season. Meanwhile, the Devils have the third-fewest number of points in the league with just 59 through 69 contests. Can Calgary keep pace in the chase for the No.1-seed in the West with a victory at home versus New Jersey on Tuesday night?
Devils extend losing skid to six games
New Jersey lost its sixth consecutive contest on Tuesday night, losing to the struggling New York Rangers 4-2.Damon Severson and Blake Coleman opened the scoring to give the Devils to 2-0 lead, but the Rangers responded with four unanswered goals to send New Jersey to yet another defeat. Corey Schneider stopped 37 of 40 shots on the night in a losing effort.
Mackenzie Blackwood is scheduled to patrol the crease for New Jersey on Tuesday night. He comes in with a 6-7-0 overall record to go along with a solid 2.23 GAA and a .932 save percentage so far this year. The rookie goaltender already has two shutouts in his first 14 career starts and he’s allowed two goals or less in 12 of his 16 career NHL games. Blackwood started versus the Flames on Feb. 27, stopping 33 of 35 shots in a narrow 2-1 loss.
The Devils have scored 2.75 goals per games (tied for 24th in the NHL), while converting on only 17.6 percent of their total power play chances for the year (19th in the NHL). They have struggled in five-on-five situations, especially defensively. New Jersey has given up 3.30 goals per game (tied for 26th in the NHL), despite ranking fourth in the league on the penalty kill, fending off 83.8 percent of their total penalties for the year (4th in the NHL).
Tkachuk nets first career hat trick in win over Golden Knights
Calgary snapped a four-game slide on Sunday night behind Matthew Tkachuk’s first career hat trick. Mikael Backlund added two goals and an assist, while winger Michael Frolik had four assists in the the 6-3 victory. David Rittich stopped 25 of 28 shots to help send the Flames to a much-needed victory.
Rittich is slated to be back between the pipes for the Flames on Tuesday night. He comes in with a spectacular 23-7-5 overall record to go along with a 2.65 GAA and a .911 save percentage so far this year. The 26-year-old stopped 19 of 21 shots against the Devils on Feb. 27 in a win over the Devils.
The Flames have scored a healthy 3.49 goals per game (4th in the NHL), while allowing just 2.83 goals per contest (10th in the NHL) in the defensive zone. Calgary has killed off only 79.5 percent of their total penalties for the year (22nd in the NHL), but they have excelled on the power play, converting on 21.9 percent of their opportunities with the man advantage (9th in the NHL) so far this year. Calgary’s +42 goal differential ranks first in the Western Conference and third in the NHL.
- Flames are 5-0 in their last 5 vs. Metropolitan
- Flames are 6-1 in their last 7 games following a win.
- Flames are 5-1 in their last 6 vs. Eastern Conference
- Devils are 0-7 in their last 7 Tuesday games.
- Devils are 0-6 in their last 6 games playing on 2 days rest.
- Devils are 0-4 in their last 4 vs. Pacific