It's a hockey night in Pittsburgh! Tonight the dreaded New Jersey Devils (9-11-4) come to town to face the Penguins for the second matchup of the season between the two division rivals. The Pens humbled the Devs 8-3 back on October 28th in the first meeting, scoring seven straight goals after falling behind 3-1.
Since then, things haven't been too great for NJD, who currently sit 6th in the 8 team Metropolitan division and winners of just 3 of their last 10 games. Part of their issues have been at the goaltender position where they will start Cory Schneider tonight for the 24th time in the 25th game of the season. Schneider has been good at times, but that heavy a workload is bound to wear out any mortal in this day and age.
Injuries have also set in on the Devils, #1 center Travis Zajac is on the IR now and out for tonight. Mike Cammalleri has missed a handful of games. Adam Henrique, questionable for tonight, has missed time too. Martin Havlat, who always gets hurt, got hurt! (And he's out tonight). Defensively Jon Merrill and Marek Zidlicky have been banged up and may or may not play tonight, and even if they do, they probably won't be 100%.
The Pens, of course, have their question marks of their own, most notably the status of Sidney Crosby, who is "under the weather" which seemingly everyone with their I.M.D (Internet Medical Degree) has diagnosed with the mumps, based on 0 evidence to support such a claim. Robert Bortuzzo is also "under the weather". Farmhands Brian Dumoulin and Scott Wilson have been recalled and may make their NHL season debuts depending on the status of the sick.
Past that, let's see what kind of game we get. Hopefully New Jersey is interested in running-and-gunning and trading chances, like they oddly (and so out of character-ly) were back in late October. That will make for fun.