Heading into the holiday beak, the New Jersey Devils got a much needed win against the Red Wings, scoring three first period goals.
By Patrick Comia
Detroit Red Wings netminder Jimmy Howard wasn’t expecting to start his Christmas break early last night, but plans can change.
And the cause were the New Jersey Devils, who were in need of some positivity after losing four of their last five games.
And in that stretch, they scored a total of five goals. Had the well begun to dry up? Were the “old” Devils starting to return and reality setting in?
Well, at least for one night, they can disregard that rubbish.
Joe Louis Arena became the rallying site for a Devils team that was desperate to turn things around and get off their recent skid of underperforming.
And, they would get contributions from two unlikely sources: Jordin Tootoo and David Schlemko.
But, that’s been the team’s M.O., surprise everyone when they least expect it. It’s been hard work and team effort this season that has been making this team turn the corner and succeed, whenever others predicted they would fail.
The Devils lit up the Red Wings early in the game, by scoring three goals and running Howard out of his own net. Kyle Palmieri, one of general manager Ray Shero’s offseason moves, came up with a two-point performance.
He scored just two points in his past four games, leading up to last night.
However, Palmieri was determined not to leave the Christmas party versus the Red Wings empty-handed, and played one of the grinches that stole a pre-Christmas victory from Detroit.
First-year forward Sergey Kalinin would add his two cents, by scoring the insurance goal and pushing New Jersey to a two-goal lead in the third period. It was his fifth of the season, but one would think he should have more.
Instead of taking the holidays off with a sour taste in their mouths, the Devils can enjoy being around the family and drinking egg nog to their hearts content.
#NJDEVILS WIN! Heading into the Christmas break like… pic.twitter.com/PisIoNRr6C
— N.J. Devil (@NJDevil00) December 23, 2015
As of last night, they are one point behind the Ottawa Senators for the eighth, and final, playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
New Jersey returns to action at PNC Arena in Raleigh, NC visiting the Hurricanes, who they beat soundly 5-1 back on December 3rd.
But for now, it’s time for some well-deserved rest and relaxation away from the rink. Happy Holidays!