New Jersey Devils (8-5-3 19pts) @
Tampa Bay Lightning (9-4-3 21pts)
This afternoon matchup concludes the two game Florida road trip for the New Jersey Devils as they take on the back to back Stanley Cup champions in the Tampa Bay Lightning. It was a feeling out process for both teams for at least the five minutes. Jan Rutta opened up the scoring for the Lightning at the 5:40 mark. New Jersey failed to clear the puck off the boards which went to Rutta who then skated the puck to the right face off circle and fired it past Devils goalie MacKenzie Blackwood to make it 1-0. After going goalless through the first fifteen games, Yegor Sharngovich finally scored his first goal of the year to tie the score up 1-1. Sharangovich received a pass to the left face off circle from Alexander Holtz and then wristed a shot to beat goalie Andrew Vasilevskiy blocker side. Before period one ended, Pat Maroon scored on the power play to put Tampa Bay back in front. Maroon pounced on the loose puck in front of the net for his third goal of the season. The Lightning would lead 2-1 after the first period.
Tampa kept the Devils off the scoreboard in period two and we’re able to expand their lead in the process. Victor Headman skated to the left face off circle where he received a pass and would shoot it past MacKenzie Blackwoodfor his third goal of the season. Herman’s goal came at the 6:17 mark and stood as the only one of the period and the Lightning would have a 3-1 lead over the Devils heading into the third period.
Unfortunately for the Lightning, New Jersey was able to claw their way back into this game. Seventy two seconds into the third period. Dawson Mercer would score his sixth goal of the season on a wrap around to get the Devils within one. Jimmy Vesey would tie the game up moments later as PK Subban gave him him a beautiful pass to send him on a breakaway and beat the goalie on his backhand to tie the game 3-3. Yegor Sharangovich moments later scored his second goal of the game as Jesper Bratt passed it to him from the corner and then fired a shot past Vasilevskiy to give the Devils their first lead of the game and making the score 4-3. Things got exciting as Brayden Point was awarded a penalty shot which was denied by Devils goalie MacKenzie Blackwood and the post to keep the lead. It would be a nail biter the rest of the way as the Devils did a great job killing a penalty and when Tampa put on the pressure to try and tie the game with the empty net. However, Tomas Tatar would extend the Devils lead as he backhanded the puck into the back of the empty net. MacKenzie Blackwood was phenomenal in this game and especially in the third period as he made 34 saves overall to earn himself and the Devils the victory by a final score of 5-3. The Devils scored four unanswered goals in the third period to give them the win. Next time we see the New Jersey Devils, they return home right before Thanksgiving to take on the Minnesota Wild on Wednesday night.
New Jersey Devils
Tampa Bay Lightning
Next up: New Jersey Devils vs Minnesota Wild, Wednesday 11/24/21 @ 7pm EST