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NHL Preview from The Sports Network



Friday, December 13th (All times Eastern)

New Jersey Devils (12-14-6) at Pittsburgh Penguins (21-10-1), 7 p.m.

(SportsNetwork.com) - The Pittsburgh Penguins will aim for a seventh victory in eight games when they welcome the struggling New Jersey Devils for Friday's Metropolitan Division battle at CONSOL Energy Center.

Pittsburgh not only has won six of its past seven games but also is sporting a 9-2-1 mark over its last 12 games.

The division-leading Penguins also boast a 13-3-0 home record this season and have won six straight in the Steel City since last losing as the host on Nov. 13 against Philadelphia.

Although the Devils have won four of the last five meetings against the rival Penguins overall, including a 4-1 victory in New Jersey when the clubs last met on Nov. 16, Pittsburgh has claimed three of four and seven of the last nine games at CONSOL Energy Center. The Penguins recorded a 3-0 home win over New Jersey back on Oct. 3 in the season opener for both teams.

The Pens bounced back from a loss in their most recent outing, posting a 2-1 regulation win over visiting Columbus on Monday after blowing a late lead in Boston on Saturday.

Evgeni Malkin and Sidney Crosby both lit the lamp to lift the Penguins to the close win over Columbus. The win briefly gave Pittsburgh possession of first place in the Eastern Conference, but the Bruins regained that distinction with Tuesday's win over Calgary. With 46 points, Boston is currently three ahead of the Pens for the top spot in the East.

Olli Maatta, Deryk Engelland, Pascal Dupuis and Jussi Jokinen supplied the assists on the Malkin and Crosby goals, while Marc-Andre Fleury turned aside 32-of-33 shots to help the Pens down the Blue Jackets.

The Pens played Monday without winger James Neal and defenseman Brooks Orpik and neither player is available for tonight. Neal is serving the second test of a five-game suspension for kneeing Boston's Brad Marchand in the head during last Saturday's game versus the Bruins.

Orpik, meanwhile, is out indefinitely with a concussion suffered in the same game. During a scrum on Saturday, Orpik was pulled down from behind by Boston's Shawn Thornton, who then began throwing punches at the unsuspecting player. Orpik was carried off the ice on a stretcher and taken to a local hospital.

Thornton's probable suspension is expected to come down today, as the Boston enforcer has an in-person hearing scheduled with the league on Friday.

Like Pittsburgh, the Devils also faced the Blue Jackets in their last outing, but Jersey coughed up a 3-1 lead on Tuesday en route to losing in regulation at Columbus. Nick Foligno was credited with the game-winning goal when Ryan Johansen's pass went in off his skate with 91 seconds remaining, lifting the Blue Jackets to a 5-4 comeback win at Nationwide Arena.

The Devils lost despite taking a 1-0 lead just 32 second into the game. New Jersey eventually pushed its cushion to 3-1 after Damien Brunner's goal at 1:08 of the second period. Columbus then scored the next three goals to take a 4-3 lead before Brunner tied it with his second tally of the game with 6:01 left in the third.

The only goal after that was the one that went off Foligno's skate with 1:31 remaining in the contest.

"It's tough to get scored against late in a game like that with the points sitting there for us," said Brunner.

In addition to Brunner's two-goal performance, Travis Zajac and Michael Ryder also scored for the Devils, who fell to 3-6-1 in their last 10. Martin Brodeur allowed five goals on just 23 shots in the loss.

Anton Volchenkov injured his neck in the recent loss to Columbus, but the veteran defenseman expects to play on Friday. Volchenkov has four assists in 24 games this season.

Cory Schneider will get the start in net tonight for the Devils. His only appearance against the Pens came in the loss on Oct. 3, when Schneider allowed all three goals on 21 shots.

Fleury is 16-21-4 with a 2.52 goals against average in 41 career tests against the Devils. He expects to get the call between the pipes on Friday.

12/13 10:49:34 ET

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Schedule

Thursday, April 24Full Scoreboard
Boston 4/24 8:00 PM ET
Detroit NBCSN, TSN, NESN, FSN-DET
Eastern Conference Quarterfinals, Game Four. Boston leads series, 2-1.
Colorado 4/24 9:30 PM ET
Minnesota CNBC, TSN2, Alt, FSN-N,WI
Western Conference Quarterfinals, Game Four. Colorado leads series, 2-1.
San Jose 4/24 10:30 PM ET
Los Angeles NBCSN, CBC, FSN-W, CSN-CA
Western Conference Quarterfinals, Game Four. San Jose leads series, 3-0.
Full Scoreboard

Standings

2013 - 2014 NHL Eastern Conference Standings
 
Atlantic Division W L OTL Pts GF GA Home Away Div
p-Boston 54 19 9 117 261 177 31-7-3 23-12-6 18-9-3
x-Tampa Bay 46 27 9 101 240 215 25-10-6 21-17-3 19-8-3
x-Montreal 46 28 8 100 215 204 23-13-5 23-15-3 18-8-4
x-Detroit 39 28 15 93 222 230 18-13-10 21-15-5 17-8-5
Ottawa 37 31 14 88 236 265 18-17-6 19-14-8 14-9-7
Toronto 38 36 8 84 231 256 24-16-1 14-20-7 14-13-3
Florida 29 45 8 66 196 268 16-20-5 13-25-3 13-16-1
Buffalo 21 51 10 52 157 248 13-21-7 8-30-3 7-18-5
 
Metropolitan Division W L OTL Pts GF GA Home Away Div
y-Pittsburgh 51 24 7 109 249 207 28-9-4 23-15-3 20-8-2
x-NY Rangers 45 31 6 96 218 193 20-17-4 25-14-2 16-11-3
x-Philadelphia 42 30 10 94 236 235 24-14-3 18-16-7 15-11-4
x-Columbus 43 32 7 93 231 216 22-15-4 21-17-3 16-13-1
Washington 38 30 14 90 235 240 21-13-7 17-17-7 12-15-3
New Jersey 35 29 18 88 197 208 21-11-9 14-18-9 16-9-5
Carolina 36 35 11 83 207 230 18-17-6 18-18-5 15-13-2
NY Islanders 34 37 11 79 225 267 13-19-9 21-18-2 10-16-4
 
x= clinched playoff berth
y= clinched division title
z= clinched overall points title
2013 - 2014 NHL Western Conference Standings
 
Central Division W L OTL Pts GF GA Home Away Div
y-Colorado 52 22 8 112 250 220 26-11-4 26-11-4 19-6-3
x-St. Louis 52 23 7 111 248 191 28-9-4 24-14-3 21-6-2
x-Chicago 46 21 15 107 267 220 27-7-7 19-14-8 13-13-3
x-Minnesota 43 27 12 98 207 206 26-10-5 17-17-7 14-12-3
x-Dallas 40 31 11 91 235 228 23-11-7 17-20-4 13-11-5
Nashville 38 32 12 88 216 242 19-17-5 19-15-7 12-13-4
Winnipeg 37 35 10 84 227 237 18-17-6 19-18-4 9-15-5
 
Pacific Division W L OTL Pts GF GA Home Away Div
z-Anaheim 54 20 8 116 266 209 29-8-4 25-12-4 22-4-3
x-San Jose 51 22 9 111 249 200 29-7-5 22-15-4 18-7-3
x-Los Angeles 46 28 8 100 206 174 23-14-4 23-14-4 16-10-3
Phoenix 37 30 15 89 216 231 22-14-5 15-16-10 14-9-6
Vancouver 36 35 11 83 196 223 20-15-6 16-20-5 12-13-4
Calgary 35 40 7 77 209 241 19-19-3 16-21-4 11-15-3
Edmonton 29 44 9 67 203 270 16-22-3 13-22-6 8-17-4
 
x= clinched playoff berth
y= clinched division title
z= clinched overall points title
  • PGA: Zurich Classic of New Orleans

    Saturday at 3:00 pm on WRAL-TV

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    Tonight at 7:05 on 620am

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    Saturday at 1:05 pm on 99.9 The Fan

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  • NBA: LA Clippers at Golden State

    Sunday at 3:30 am on 99.9 The Fan

Scoreboard
Local
Final
CHR 9
DUR 1
 
Final
MIA 101
CHA 97
7:05pm Tonight
CHR
DUR
 
Final
ATL 3
MIA 1
Final
CHC 5
ARI 7
Final
COL 10
SFG 12
Final
OAK 0
TEX 3
Final
SEA 5
HOU 3
Final
PIT 2
CIN 5
Final
CLE 5
KAN 3
Final
WAS 5
ANA 4
Final
TOR 8
BAL 10
Final
DET 4
CWS 6
Final
TAM 4
MIN 6
Final
BOS 5
NYY 1
Final
NYM 3
STL 2
Final
MIL 5
SDP 2
Final
LOS 5
PHI 2
12:05pm Today
CLE
KAN
 
12:35pm Today
PIT
CIN
 
1:08pm Today
DET
CWS
 
1:10pm Today
TAM
MIN
 
1:10pm Today
NYM
STL
 
2:20pm Today
CHC
ARI
 
7:05pm Tonight
WAS
SDP
 
7:07pm Tonight
TOR
BAL
 
7:10pm Tonight
BOS
NYY
 
8:10pm Tonight
HOU
OAK
 
10:10pm Tonight
LOS
PHI
 
Final
MIA 101
CHA 97
Final
SAN 92
DAL 113
Final
HOU 105
POR 112
7:00pm Tonight
ATL
IND
8:00pm Tonight
MEM
OKC
10:30pm Tonight
GSW
LAC
Final
CLB 4
PIT 3
Final
DAL 4
ANA 2
Final
CHI 4
STL 3
8:00pm Tonight
DET
BOS
9:30pm Tonight
MIN
COL
10:30pm Tonight
LOS
SJS
Final
CHR 9
DUR 1
 
7:05pm Tonight
CHR
DUR