Devils scratch Brunner, won’t face ex-Detroit mates


The New Jersey Devils will make Damien Brunner a healthy scratch for Friday’s game against Detroit, denying Brunner the chance to go up against his former team.

Brunner — who signed a two-year, $5 million deal with New Jersey late in the summer after failing to re-up with the Wings — has struggled mightily in his first season with the Devils, scoring just four goals and eight points in 26 games.

New Jersey was hopeful the Swiss forward would produce like he did in his first NHL campaign. Brunner had a very solid ’13 season in Detroit, scoring 12 goals and 26 points in 44 games, then led the team with five goals in 14 playoff appearances.

This year, though, has been a challenge. Brunner has just one point in his last 16 games and has been in and out of the lineup recently, earning himself a spot in head coach Peter DeBoer’s doghouse.