If you’re a New Jersey Devils fan, perhaps you can take some small measure of comfort in knowing that you aren’t the only ones that haven’t been having a good time lately.
Devils goaltender Cory Schneider was in the mood to vent his frustrations after his team blew their third straight late-game lead to force overtime. They went on to lose two of those three contests.
“It’s excruciating. Three times in a row,” Schneider told the Star-Ledger. “I don’t know if it would be any better if it hadn’t happened twice in a row before this, but it (stinks). We should be on a three-game winning streak and moving up the standings with six points.”
Schneider accepted part of the blame given that he was the one that surrendered those key goals, but he also called out his team for not providing him with a bigger buffer.
The Devils haven’t provided him with much offensive support all season. In fact, they’ve only scored three or more goals in five of his 29 starts this season. No wonder he has a 10-10-9 record despite ranking second among eligible netminders with a 1.91 GAA.
The consolation point system has kept the Devils in the running for a playoff spot as they current lead the Eastern Conference with 13. Even still, their recent inability to stay strong late in the third period of contests has robbed them of a potentially critical winning streak.
The Edmonton Oilers have assigned center Leon Draisaitl to AHL Bakersfield.
The demotion of Draisaitl, 19, means 21-year-old rookie Anton Slepyshev has made the opening-day roster after scoring twice and adding two assists in exhibition action.
The Oilers experimented during the preseason with Draisaitl, a natural center, on the wing. He didn’t have a particularly poor camp, finishing with one goal and three assists in six games.
But Slepyshev apparently impressed more.
“He’s a young player but he’s played pro hockey before,” coach Todd McLellan told the Edmonton Journal. “You can see it.”
Slepyshev played 58 games in the KHL last season, scoring 15 goals for Salavat Yulaev Ufa.
A preseason push by a number of Vancouver Canucks youngsters has left forward Linden Vey and defenseman Frank Corrado on waivers today.
The more surprising name of the two is Corrado, the 22-year-old who entered the season with an excellent chance of making the opening-day roster. However, it seems that rookie d-man Ben Hutton, 22, has been given the nod after finishing an eye-opening preseason with one goal and four assists in seven games. (This despite Hutton being waiver exempt. So it’s a risk for the Canucks, to be sure.)
It was the play of 19-year-old rookie Jared McCann that led, in part, to the waiving of Vey. (For more on that, click here.) Veteran Adam Cracknell remains with the team as well, to some surprise.
Rookie winger Jake Virtanen is also expected to be on Vancouver’s opening-day roster, though that’s no big shock.
Defenseman Alex Biega is also on waivers, as expected.