New York Islanders (0-0-0) at New Jersey Devils (0-0-0)
|Date & Time||Friday October 4, 2013, 7:00 PM (EDT)|
The Line: New Jersey Devils -116 / New York Islanders +105 --- Over/Under: 5
|TV Channel||Stream NHL games all season on ESPN+ for only $4.99 a month. Sign up now!|
It was a lackluster opener for the New Jersey Devils in Pittsburgh on Thursday night. They didn't do much to alleviate people's concerns that they're going to have trouble scoring goals this season. New Jersey was shutout 3-0 by the Penguins and made Marc-Andre Fleury look like a Vezina Trophy candidate in their first game of the season. Cory Schneider made the start in goal and allowed three goals on just 21 shots as he took the defeat in his Devils' debut. Martin Brodeur will be between the pipes for the home opener on Thursday against the New York Islanders but it won't make much difference if this team can't put the puck in the net. Damien Brunner fired eight shots on goal in his first game as a Devil, but the other new forward additions (Jaromir Jagr, Michael Ryder, and Ryane Clowe) combined for just two.
John Tavares was named captain of the New York Islanders in the offseason and he's slowly proving to everyone that he's one of the best players in the National Hockey League. This is a kid that makes anyone he's playing with better and can singlehandedly change the game in the blink of an eye. New York should be able to score goals with their forward depth but defensively and in goal they have a lot to prove if they're going to take that next step toward being a serious contender in the Eastern Conference. They're young enough and have enough talent where they can make that step but they need to find consistency throughout the course of a long season. Their playoff appearance last year was a great building block but now it's time to up the ante. There's good value on this club in their opener.