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NHL Preview from The Sports Network

Tuesday, March 25rd (All times eastern)

Pittsburgh Penguins (43-26-7) at New Jersey Devils (42-26-7), 7 p.m.

(Sports Network) - A key battle for the top spots in both the Atlantic Division and Eastern Conference is on tap tonight in New Jersey, as the Devils host the Pittsburgh Penguins at the Prudential Center.

Pittsburgh is currently leading the Atlantic Division with 93 points, but the Devils are just two points behind. New Jersey has a game in hand over the Penguins with seven games remaining in its regular-season schedule. The Pens are also second in the conference and trail Montreal by three points for the East lead.

The Penguins can clinch a playoff spot with a win tonight. New Jersey can also secure a postseason berth if it beats the Pens, Buffalo gets no points against Ottawa and Washington gets one or no points against Carolina.

The Devils will try to exact a bit of revenge tonight, as New Jersey was slammed by the Penguins, 7-1, this past Saturday in Pittsburgh. It was the third straight loss for the Devils, who have been outscored, 12-3, during the slide.

Evgeni Malkin scored a pair of goals and added an assist to join the 100-point club as the Pens destroyed the visiting Devils. The win also allowed Pittsburgh to leap past New Jersey for first place in the Atlantic. Brian Gionta scored the lone goal while Martin Brodeur was charged with four goals on 19 shots before being lifted in the third period for the Devils.

New Jersey is 4-3 against the Penguins this season and has taken six of the last 10 meetings between the clubs. Pittsburgh is 2-0-1 in three trips to the Prudential Center this year.

The Penguins played on Monday night and were dealt a 4-1 setback by the New York Islanders. Bill Guerin registered a goal and an assist to lead the Isles to the home victory at Nassau Coliseum.

Petr Sykora lit the lamp for the Penguins, while Ty Conklin allowed four goals on 36 shots in defeat.

The Penguins played their sixth straight game without captain Sidney Crosby on Monday. Last year's Art Ross and Hart Trophy recipient is questionable once again for tonight's test with a high ankle sprain that has caused him to sit out 27 of Pittsburgh's last 30 contests.

Pittsburgh had won five of six overall before Monday's setback, but has now lost five of its last seven on the road. The Penguins are 20-16-2 as the visiting team this season.

The Devils have a 22-13-2 record in their inaugural season at the Prudential Center, but have lost two straight and three of their last four tests at the Rock.

03/25 16:08:09 ET

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