Desperate Devils try to aid playoff cause vs. Flames
(SportsNetwork.com) - The New Jersey Devils have managed to stay afloat in the Eastern Conference playoff race thanks to their recent play. The club hopes to add another win to its cause when the Calgary Flames visit Prudential Center on Monday.
The Devils have posted wins in three of their last four games and are currently riding a seven-game point streak with a 4-0-3 record over that stretch.
Still, New Jersey is just outside the playoff picture with 84 points, leaving the club tied with Toronto and three points behind Columbus for the East's second wild card spot. The Devils also are four in back of Detroit for the first wild card berth.
Like Columbus and Detroit, the Devils have four games remaining in the regular season, while the Maple Leafs have only three tilts left. New Jersey is the only team from that group in action on Monday.
New Jersey won its second straight game on Saturday with a 3-1 road victory over the Carolina Hurricanes. Dainius Zubrus scored twice and Cory Schneider stopped 26 shots to help the Devils record two valuable points.
Zubrus recorded his second two-goal game of the campaign and now has 13 markers on the season.
"It was nice for (Zubrus)," Devils head coach Peter DeBoer said of Zubrus. "He works hard every night and doesn't get rewarded a lot."
Travis Zajac netted what proved to be the game-winner 6:34 into the second, while Schneider turned aside all eight shots he faced in the third for the Devils.
Schneider has started the last three games for New Jersey and could get the call over Martin Brodeur again tonight. The 28-year-old American is 4-2-0 with a 2.13 goals against average and .936 save percentage in six career games against Calgary.
New Jersey has won two straight and three of its last four home games and is 20-10-8 in Newark this season.
Although the Flames have been eliminated from postseason contention out West, the club has played with pride down the stretch and picked up a second straight win in Friday's 2-1 road victory at Florida. The win gave Calgary a 2-2-0 mark on a five-game road trip that ends tonight in the Garden State.
Mike Cammalleri netted the winner early in the second period and Joey MacDonald stopped 34 pucks to help the Flames down the Panthers, 2-1.
Kenny Agostino also produced his first NHL goal for the Flames, who have won six of 10.
"We promised our fans and we even promised ourselves that we would play the games to win until the final second of the regular season," Calgary head coach Bob Hartley said of his team playing hard down the stretch.
Calgary, which is 15-20-4 as the road club this season, beat a visiting Devils club back on Oct. 11. Sean Monahan notched the game-winning goal with 2:43 remaining for the Flames, as they downed the Devils, 3-2, at the Saddledome.
The Flames have won two straight and three of their last four overall games against New Jersey, but the Devils have claimed two in a row and three of four at home in this series.
04/07 10:40:40 ET