hockey | nhl

New Jersey Devils vs. Buffalo Sabres Pick & Prediction APR 8TH 2021

FinishedTV: MSGFirst Niagara Center Buffalo

23New Jersey Devils
24Buffalo Sabres

-1.5 +210
5.5o -108
1 2 3
3 0 3
1 2 0

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New Jersey Devils vs. Buffalo Sabres Recap APR 8TH 2021

Jack Eichel's goal fewer than three minutes after faceoff Monday night sparked a five-goal first period for the host Buffalo Sabres, who continued their dominance of the New Jersey Devils with a 7-1 rout.

Conor Sheary scored twice in the first for the Sabres, who led 5-0 after one and 6-0 fewer than five minutes into the second. Jeff Skinner and Rasmus Asplund added first-period goals before Victor Olofsson and Henri Jokiharju scored in the second.

The Sabres have beaten the Devils twice this season by a combined score of 14-3. Buffalo's five-goal first period was its biggest outburst since it scored five against New Jersey in the second period of a 5-1 win on Jan. 8 of last season.

Sabres goalie Linus Ullmark made 44 saves.

Nico Hischier scored the lone goal for the Devils, who lost to the New York Rangers 4-0 Saturday and have given up 11 goals or more over a two-game span five times this season. Goalie Louis Domingue was pulled after stopping just 10 of 15 shots in the first period. Mackenzie Blackwood made 15 saves the rest of the way.

The five goals allowed in the first were the most allowed by the Devils in a period since they allowed six to the Calgary Flames in the third period of a 9-4 loss on Mar. 12. New Jersey hadn't given up five goals in the first period of a game since Feb. 8, 1993, when it surrendered five in the first period of an 8-5 loss to the Detroit Red Wings.

Eichel opened the scoring at 2:46, when Domingue slowed Eichel's shot from point-blank range but could not stop the puck from trickling through. Skinner doubled the lead at the 4:59 mark when he picked up a loose puck in the Devils' zone and beat Domingue on the breakaway.

Sheary extended the Sabres' lead to 4-0 by scoring back-to-back goals in a span of just under 10 minutes. The left winger put back the rebound of a Skinner backhand at 6:57 before his shot from the faceoff circle clipped off the glove of Domingue and bounced into the net with 3:19 left.

Asplund made it 5-0 with a slapshot that sailed over Domingue's glove with 58 seconds left in the period. Domingue snapped his stick over his knees as he skated off the ice following the buzzer.

Olofsson gave the Sabres a 6-0 lead by scoring 4:40 into the second. Hischier got the Devils on the board with a power-play goal at the 8:10 mark before Jokiharju scored on the power play just under four minutes later.

--Field Level Media

Amid a dismal season, the only sustained success the Buffalo Sabres have enjoyed has come against the New Jersey Devils.

Looking to extend their points streak to a season-high six games, the host Sabres will try for a second victory in three days over the struggling Devils on Thursday night.

Since its shootout-era-record 18-game winless stretch (0-15-3), Buffalo is 3-0-1. The Sabres also have earned at least one point in five consecutive games. Down a goal late in the second period Tuesday against New Jersey, the Sabres scored three unanswered goals to pull out a 5-3 victory.

"Obviously, it's been documented pretty well we had a tough stretch there, but it's good to get rewarded," Sabres forward Casey Mittelstadt, who scored the go-ahead goal Tuesday and has three goals with two assists in the past four games, told the official website of the NHL.

"It's good to have the guys have smiles on their faces. See guys having fun. We have to remember the feeling and keep going."

The Sabres have had plenty to smile about while posting a 4-2-1 mark vs. New Jersey this season. The Devils are the only East Division team against whom Buffalo has a winning record.

Mittelstadt has four points in his past three games against the Devils, while defenseman Rasmus Dahlin has two goals and five assists against vs. New Jersey this season.

New Jersey, which is in an 0-2-2 rut, has yielded five goals in three of its past four games.

"We need to be better as a group," Devils forward Jesper Bratt, who has a goal in two straight games and 11 points in his past 12 contests, told "It's a hard division and you've got to compete. I think we have another gear, and we need to get it fixed up for the next game."

New Jersey goalie Scott Wedgewood allowed four goals for a second straight start Tuesday and has given up seven in two outings vs. Buffalo this season.

Devils forward and Buffalo native Miles Wood has four of his team-leading 11 goals against the Sabres this season.

--Field Level Media

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Last 10

W 10% L 90%
1 9
  • @Pittsburgh L 6 - 7
  • NY Rangers L 5 - 3
  • @NY Rangers L 3 - 6
  • @NY Rangers L 0 - 4
  • NY Rangers L 3 - 0
  • Pittsburgh L 5 - 2
  • Pittsburgh L 6 - 4
  • @Buffalo W 6 - 3
  • Buffalo L 5 - 3
  • Washington L 5 - 4
W 50% L 50%
5 5
  • Boston L 2 - 0
  • Pittsburgh W 2 - 4
  • Pittsburgh L 3 - 2
  • @Washington W 5 - 2
  • @Boston L 2 - 3
  • @Philadelphia W 5 - 3
  • Washington L 4 - 3
  • New Jersey L 6 - 3
  • @New Jersey W 5 - 3
  • NY Rangers W 2 - 3

Next Games

  • @Pittsburgh(04-20-21) L 6 - 7
  • @Pittsburgh(04-20-21) L 6 - 7
  • @Philadelphia(03-23-21) W 4 - 3
  • Philadelphia(01-28-21) L 3 - 1
  • Philadelphia(01-28-21) L 3 - 1
  • Boston(04-20-21) L 2 - 0
  • Boston(04-20-21) L 2 - 0
  • @NY Rangers(03-22-21) L 3 - 5
  • @NY Rangers(03-22-21) L 3 - 5
  • @Boston(04-13-21) L 2 - 3

Last Meetings

  • Devils @ Sabres 6-3
  • Sabres @ Devils 5-3
  • Sabres @ Devils 2-3
  • Devils @ Sabres 4-3
  • Sabres @ Devils 4-1
  • Sabres @ Devils 3-2
  • Devils @ Sabres 5-3
  • Devils @ Sabres 3-4
  • Devils @ Sabres 1-7
  • Devils @ Sabres 2-7

Eastern Conference

Florida Panthers3012363 16-0-414-0-8152126L16-0-3
Tampa Bay Lightning3014161 17-0-613-0-8153121L15-0-5
Toronto Maple Leafs2812561 14-0-714-0-5147120L46-0-2
Boston Bruins2612456 14-0-612-0-6127110L27-0-2
Montreal Canadiens1915644 10-0-109-0-5126123L23-0-7
Detroit Red Wings1625537 10-0-106-0-15107153L34-0-4
Ottawa Senators1626335 9-0-107-0-16126166L14-0-6
Buffalo Sabres1227428 5-0-157-0-12111156L15-0-4

Western Conference

Colorado Avalanche309363 18-0-412-0-5154101L19-0-1
Minnesota Wild2813258 17-0-411-0-9137117L27-0-2
Winnipeg Jets2715155 11-0-716-0-8144120L16-0-3
Nashville Predators2521151 14-0-911-0-12126132L26-0-4
Chicago Blackhawks2120345 11-0-810-0-12129144L15-0-5
Dallas Stars1914644 12-0-67-0-8130113L26-0-2
St. Louis Blues1918442 7-0-1012-0-8124135L23-0-6

Eastern Conference

Carolina Hurricanes3010363 16-0-314-0-7146108L16-0-2
Washington Capitals2913260 14-0-615-0-7163141L16-0-4
New York Islanders2913361 19-0-210-0-11133106L27-0-3
Pittsburgh Penguins2914260 17-0-312-0-11159132L16-0-3
New York Rangers2317450 11-0-712-0-10152124L16-0-2
Philadelphia Flyers2018343 9-0-1011-0-8128162L23-0-4
Columbus Blue Jackets1524636 8-0-87-0-16117163L71-0-8
New Jersey Devils1425230 4-0-1710-0-8115157L71-0-9

Western Conference

Vegas Golden Knights3211064 17-0-415-0-7150100L18-0-2
Edmonton Oilers2715256 14-0-813-0-7141121L16-0-2
Arizona Coyotes2021343 11-0-99-0-12123146L14-0-6
Calgary Flames1923240 10-0-109-0-13118133L24-0-6
San Jose Sharks1822238 8-0-1010-0-12120152L63-0-6
Vancouver Canucks1718236 10-0-97-0-9103122L36-0-3
Los Angeles Kings1620537 7-0-99-0-11114127L23-0-7
Anaheim Ducks1425533 5-0-169-0-9103147L23-0-6

Last Injuries

Buffalo Sabres

  • Linus Ullmark

    Ques Thurs | questionable

    Ullmark has sat out of the last four contests due to an undefined ailment, and it is unknown if he will face the Bruins on Thursday.

  • Kyle Okposo

    out for season | out

    Okposo exited the last game with a broken bone in his cheek, and he will miss the remainder of the season.

  • Jack Eichel

    out for season | I-R

    Eichel has been placed on the injured reserve list with a herniated disc in his neck, and he will miss the remainder of the season.

  • Riley Sheahan

    Prob Sun | probable

    Sheahan has missed the last two games due to an undisclosed injury, but he is expected to dress for Sunday's battle with the Penguins.

  • Carter Hutton

    Lower Body
    Late April | out

    Hutton has missed the last three contests due to a lower-body injury, and he is expected to be out of lineup until end of April.

  • Brandon Montour

    Prob Thurs | I-R

    Montour has been designated for the COVID-19 Protocol list, but he is expected to be active for Thursday's matchup with the Lightning.

  • Curtis Lazar

    Lower Body
    Ques Tues | questionable

    Lazar is hampered by a lower-body injury, and it is unclear if he will line up against the Sabres on Tuesday.

  • Taylor Hall

    Ques Tues | questionable

    Hall has missed the last four contests dealing with an undisclosed issue, and it is unclear if he will be available for Tuesday's game versus the Bruins.

New Jersey Devils

  • Pavel Zacha

    Out indefinitely | out

    Zacha is out of the lineup with an undefined ailment, and he will miss an extended period.

  • Ty Smith

    Upper Body
    Ques Thurs | questionable

    Smith was held out of the last contest with an upper-body injury, and it remains to be seen if he will participate in Thursday's game against the Penguins.

  • P.K. Subban

    Out indefinitely | I-R

    Subban has been posted to the COVID-19 protocol list, and team officials have yet to provide an exact return date.

  • Mackenzie Blackwood

    Upper Body
    Ques Thurs | questionable

    Blackwood sat out the last game with an upper-body injury, and it is undetermined if he will lace up for Thursday's matchup against the Penguins.

  • Jesper Bratt

    Ques Thurs | questionable

    Bratt has missed the last four games with an undisclosed issue, and it is unknown if he will be available versus the Penguins on Thursday.

  • Dmitry Kulikov

    Out indefinitely | I-R

    Kulikov has been designated for the COVID-19 Protocol list, and team officials have yet to provide an exact return date.

  • P.K. Subban

    Ques Sat | questionable

    Subban is tending to an undisclosed issue, and it is unclear if he will be available Saturday versus the Rangers.

  • Nico Hischier

    Prob Tues | I-R

    Hischier has been assigned to the injured reserve list after surgery to repair a frontal sinus fracture. He is expected to return to the ice Tuesday versus the Rangers.