The Matchup: New Jersey Devils (8-4-0) vs Washington Capitals (8-2-4). This is the second meeting this season between the two teams. Washington sits in 1st in the SouthEast division, 6pts ahead of Tampa Bay and the Devils sit in 3rd place in the Atlantic Division, 3 points behind the New York Rangers.
Last Devils Game: They pretty much out-did everything the Tampa Bay Lightning did but couldn't find a way to put up more goals on them. It took a shootout and a David Clarkson backhand in the shootout to grab the win on the road.
Last Capitals Game: Columbus knocked off the Capitals 5-4 in OT but that wasn't the bad news. The Capitals lost Alexander Ovechkin to an injury and is slated as "week-to-week."
Last Devils / Capitals Game: This game, that took place in Washington saw the Capitals get out to an early 2-0 lead in the first before watching the Devils storm back and eventually get goals from Jamie Langenbrunner and Zach Parise in the shootout to seal their third straight road victory.
Tonight's Matchup: Lets begin with who's in and who's out. As mentioned above, Ovechkin will not be in the lineup for tonight's game. Patrik Elias, who began skating with the team this week will not get the green light for tonight's game and Matt Halischuk has been recalled from Lowell for tonight's game which makes it seem that Andrew Peters will once again take his familiar seat above the press box.
The Devils need to approach this game as if it were a road game. NJ is perfect on the road and awful at home. I don't know why and I don't think NJ knows why they can't seem to win games at home but whatever it is they do away from The Rock, they need to do that tonight.
I would imagine that the Capitals will want to come out firing on all cylinders tonight. They need to make up for no AO, they are coming off an OT loss against the Blue Jackets at home and their defense is giving up 30+ shots a game. This is a team that's supposed to have a very good season and contend for the cup but the few games I watched of them this season, I felt at little less than ethusiastic about them.