The New Jersey Devils, the Eastern Conference champions from last season, cling to a playoff spot and are only two points up on the New York Islanders following a 3-1 loss Monday night.
The Devils are 3-3-4 in their last 10 games and are currently without Ilya Kovalchuk, who remains out of the lineup with a shoulder injury. It was a horrible start that did the Devils in on Monday.
The Islanders scored twice within the first eight minutes of the opening period, before John Tavares provided the insurance in the third period with his 22nd goal of the season.
Following the loss, Devils head coach Peter DeBoer essentially told reporters that New Jersey’s playoff destiny was in its own hands.