San Jose looks to continue their run of strong play and pick up their third-straight victory.
The San Jose Sharks return home fresh off a sweep of Alberta where their goaltending was simply outstanding. Now, the Sharks look to take their road performances to the friendly confines of the SAP Center as San Jose welcomes the New Jersey Devils to town.
San Jose heads into this contest on quite the roll of late having rattled off victories in five of their last six games. Meanwhile, their opponents from the East Coast, are heading in the opposite direction of team teal.
New Jersey heads into this matchup having dropped five of their last six contests as the Devils have fallen out of the playoff chase in the Eastern Conference.
This will be the final meeting of the season between these two clubs as the Sharks defeated the Devils all the way back on Oct. 16 as San Jose picked up a 2-1 shootout win in Peter DeBoer’s return to New Jersey.
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Sharks: Martin Jones. Jones was lights out for San Jose in his last game against Calgary making a career-high 47 saves in leading the Sharks to victory. Jones has played his best hockey since the calendar turned to 2016, and he’s won his last four starts between the pipes. For the season, Jones has made 55 starts with a 33-17-4 record with a 2.29 GAA and a .919 save percentage.
Devils: Cory Schneider. This game features two of the most promising young netminders in the league as Schneider has been great for the Devils all season long. The All-Star has appeared in the same amount of games as Jones this season and has posted better overall numbers with a 2.17 GAA and a .923 save percentage. This should make for a fun night between the pipes.
Keys to the Game
1. Get To The Net
New Jersey isn’t an offensive juggernaut by any means ranking last in the league in goals per game. However, the Devils are a stingy defensive unit ranking in the Top-10 in both goals against and penalty kill, along with the aforementioned Schneider between the pipes. San Jose will have to get bodies in front and make life difficult on the Devils goaltender.
2. Use Your Depth
The Sharks are a much deeper team than the Devils so DeBoer will want to roll over his four lines as usual. Get the puck in deep and try to wear down a New Jersey team that has really struggled to score this year. If San Jose can get out to an early lead, they can dictate the game from that point on.
3. Start Off On The Right Foot
With the Sharks playing nine of their next 10 games at SAP Center, team teal wants to get off on the right foot and turn around their home ice record. San Jose typically struggles in their initial contest coming back from the road, but securing two points will help continue the roll the Sharks have been on.
TV: CSN-California (7:30 p.m. PST)
Radio: 98.5 KFOX