Jon Merrill won’t forget his first.
The Devils rookie, playing in his 31st career contest, scored his first-ever NHL goal in overtime on Friday as the Devils beat the Oilers 2-1 at Prudential.
Merrill, the former University of Michigan standout taken 38th overall in 2010, took a Michael Ryder pass in the extra frame and rifled home a shot past Ilya Bryzgalov to snap New Jersey’s two-game losing streak:
Merrill, 22, had his freshman campaign derailed early as he suffered a concussion in his NHL debut back in November. The big-bodied defenseman missed six games and had to spend some time with AHL Albany before returning to New Jersey but has been good over the last while, earning the confidence of head coach Peter DeBoer and getting the minutes that come along with it.
Merrill played 20:49 against Edmonton on Friday, earning first-star honors.
According to TSN’s Darren Dreger, Raffi Torres has been suspended pending his disciplinary hearing with the league for his hit on Ducks forward Jakob Silfverberg.
Torres was assessed a match penalty for targeting Silfverberg’s head on Saturday night.
The 33-year-old missed all of last season with a knee injury, and it looks like the start of his regular season will be delayed once again.
Head coach Bruce Boudreau said that Silfverberg could have come back into the game, but he was held out for precautionary reasons.
Ducks center Ryan Kesler didn’t hide his feelings after the contest.
“(Torres) is the same player every year,” Kesler told reporters. “He needs to learn how to hit. That has no part in our game anymore.”
The Edmonton Oilers placed Ben Scrivens on waivers on Sunday.
Should he go unclaimed, the 29-year-old will be sent to the American Hockey League.
It looks like Edmonton will enter the regular season with Cam Talbot and Anders Nilsson as their goaltenders.
Scrivens was the team’s number one goalie last year, but his overall numbers were among the worst for starting goaltenders in the NHL.
He had a 15-26-11 record with a 3.16 goals-against-average and a .890 save percentage in 57 games last season.
Scrivens is scheduled to make $2.3 million in the final year of his contract.
If he does end up in the AHL, the Oilers will carry $1.35 million of dead money on the salary cap.
The move comes one day after Edmonton placed Nikita Nikitin on waivers.
The 29-year-old officially cleared on Sunday afternoon.