NHL Preview from The Sports Network |
Thursday, March 11th
(All times eastern)
Chicago Blackhawks (18-35-9-6) at New Jersey Devils (35-21-11-2), 7:30 p.m.
(Sports Network) - The New Jersey Devils will attempt to get back on the
winning track this evening, when they skate against the lowly Chicago
Blackhawks at Continental Airlines Arena.
New Jersey has dropped five of its last seven contests to remain in sixth
place in the Eastern Conference. The Devils are four points behind fifth place
Boston and one point ahead of Montreal.
The Devils dropped a 3-1 decision to the arch-rival Philadelphia Flyers on
Tuesday night. New Jersey is now seven points behind Philadelphia for first
place in the division.
Turner Stevenson scored the lone goal for New Jersey, while Martin Brodeur
made 17 saves in defeat.
Defenseman Brian Rafalski sat out the final two periods after aggravating a
bruise behind the back of his right knee. It is unknown when Rafalski will
return to the ice.
The Devils failed to pick up a point for the first time in four games
(2-1-0-1) and fell to 2-4-0-1 in their last seven. New Jersey has lost two
straight at home after going five games without a loss (4-0-1) at the
Chicago is well out of the playoff race with a Western Conference low 51
points. The Blackhawks are 1-4-2-1 in their last eight contests and 2-6-2-1 in
their last 11.
The Blackhawks have had an extended break since falling 4-3 in overtime to the
Edmonton Oilers on Sunday. Tyler Arnason had a pair of power-play goals for
the Blackhawks, while Eric Daze added a tally in the win.
Matt Underhill yielded four goals on 33 shots to suffer a loss in his NHL
Just before the trade deadline Tuesday, the Blackhawks dealt veteran
defenseman Alexander Karpovtsev for a fourth-round pick in the 2004 draft. The
33-year-old Karpovtsev has registered seven assists in just 24 games this
season. Karpovtsev missed nearly three months of action with an ankle injury.
Karpovtsev has spent the last four seasons with Chicago after coming over from
Toronto in a trade for Bryan McCabe.
Chicago has posted a 2-1-1 mark in its last four road contests. For the year,
Chicago is 6-23-4-1 in foreign buildings.
These teams skated to a 2-2 tie on December 21 at the United Center. New
Jersey is 6-2-4 in the last 12 meetings between these teams. Chicago is
winless (0-4-1) in its last five trips to Jersey.
03/11 10:23:21 ET