NHL Preview from The Sports Network
Wednesday, November 23rd (All times eastern)
Columbus Blue Jackets (5-13-2) at New Jersey Devils (10-8-1), 7 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The Blue Jackets have had little to cheer about this season, but Columbus will aim for a third straight win when it visits the New Jersey Devils tonight at the Prudential Center.
With recent wins over Nashville and Calgary, the Blue Jackets were able to post consecutive victories for the first time this season. Columbus also has recorded a point in three straight tests and is 3-1-1 over its last five games following a dismal 2-12-1 start to the 2011-12 campaign.
The Blue Jackets will also shoot for just their second road win of the year tonight. Columbus is 1-7-1 as the guest after recording an overtime decision this past Saturday in Nashville. The Blue Jackets have never won a game in New Jersey, going 0-3 with a tie in four all-time trips to the Garden State.
The Jackets followed the 4-3 win in Nashville with Monday's 4-1 home victory over the Calgary Flames. Jeff Carter scored two goals against the Flames, giving the former Philadelphia Flyer three markers in the last two games after failing to score in his first eight appearances in a Columbus sweater.
Antoine Vermette and Rick Nash also scored, while Vinny Prospal added three assists for the Blue Jackets, who haven't won three in a row since Feb. 18-25 of last season.
Curtis Sanford made 27 saves for Columbus, and with Steve Mason sidelined with a head injury, he is expected to get the start again tonight.
The Blue Jackets have not fared well against New Jersey over the years, going 3-7-0 with a tie in the 11 all-time meetings. The Devils have won four straight and five of six in the series overall.
The Devils had won two straight before closing a five-game road trip Monday with a 4-3 regulation loss against the Florida Panthers. Tomas Fleischmann's goal with 2:03 to play capped a Florida comeback, as the Panthers charged back from a 3-0 first-period deficit to win the game.
Dainius Zubrus, Petr Sykora and Ilya Kovalchuk each had a goal for the Devils, who lost for just the third time in nine games. Martin Brodeur was touched for all four goals on 36 shots.
"No lead is safe in this league," said Brodeur. "I mean we scored three times real quick there, but anyone can do that. They came back and they deserve all the credit tonight."
Devils defenseman Anton Volchenkov left Monday's game after sustaining a cut to his face and he is questionable for tonight.
New Jersey has a 4-3-1 record as the host this season.
11/23 10:39:57 ET