The Game: New Jersey Devils (0-2-2) vs. the Boston Bruins (3-1-0)
The Time: 7:00 PM EST
The Broadcast: ESPN+
The Last Game: The Devils played better than the first three games, but still lost to Connor McDivin and the Edmonton Oilers in a shootout. While it’s not time to hit the panic button yet, there are some really obvious concerns that the Devils are dealing with. It was never questioned that the Devils had a weak defensive core, and unless a trade is made there doesn’t appear to be an internal solution to solve this. A concern, however, that I can’t help but be concerned about is John Hynes’ system, and how it fits with the Devils entourage. Many fans question his line decisions, and his questionable in-game decisions. His affinity for the dump-and-chase doesn’t fit with the current Devils roster, with skill players with the ability to carry the puck in. Whatever it may be, it is obvious something needs to change.
Boston Bullies: As was expected, the Boston Bruins are largely being carried by the usual suspects. Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak are off to a hot starts, with 5 points in 4 games. Bergeron is next with 3 points, and after that not much else. Tuuka Rask and Jaroslav Halak, having split starts, have played very well. Rask has a .937 save percentage, with no losses. Halak meanwhile, has played even better statistically, with a .957 save percentage. Obviously, these numbers will soon balance themselves out, but the Bruins goalies are undoubtedly hot right now. Hopefully, the Devils can be the ones to cool them off.
Projected Lineups: No news yet on the Devils side, but I’d like to mention Jesper Boqvist sitting in the press box helps no one long-term and (evidently) short-term.
I’d expect the Bruins to roll out the same lines as usual, with Rask starting in goal, so it should look something like this.
Marchand - Bergeron - Pastrnak
Debrusk - Krejci - Kuhlman
Heinen - Coyle - Backes
Nordstrom - Kuraly - Wagner
Chara - McAvoy
Krug - Carlo
Grzelcyk - Clifton
Your Thoughts: What do you think needs to change for the Devils to succeed? Do we have a chance against the Bruins? Will Jack Hughes get his first point tonight? Let me know in the comments below, and take care!