Before we begin tonight's edition of GameDay, I'd like to show you a new friend of ours, his name is "The Rock".
That is as of 1 week ago, at the Prudential Center in Newark. Boy, will she be a beaut!
New Jersey (20-13-3, 43 Pts, 1st Atlantic Division, 3rd Eastern Conference) vs. Washington (16-14-7, 39 Pts, 3rd Southeast Division, 9th Eastern Conference)
The Swamp of East Rutherford
Radio: WFAN 660
Last we met: Marty pwned Ovechkin. 'Nuff said. Well, I guess, THE CAPTAIN, Zajac, THE ZACH and GIO scoring in a 4-1 win is cool. But seriously, Marty with total Ovechkin pwnage.
Season Series: 1-0 Devils
Next Meeting: A home and home 2/25 and 2/26.
#26 Patrik Elias 13-20-33
#9 Zach Parise 14-15-29
#14 Brian Gionta 15-13-28
#15 Jamie Langenbrunner 14-14-28
#23 Scott Gomez 4-20-24
#8 Alex Ovechkin 25-24-49
#28 Alexander Semin 16-17-33
#9 Dainius Zubrus 14-19-33
#17 Chris Clark 14-14-28
#18 Matt Pettinger 10-7-17
#30 Martin Brodeur 20-12-2, 5 SO, 2.15 GAA, .923%
#40 Scott Clemmensen 0-1-1, 0 SO, 3.60 GAA, .878%
#37 Olaf Kolzig 12-9-4, 0 SO, 3.09 GAA, .912%
#1 Brent Johnson 4-5-3, 0 SO, 3.50 GAA, .893%
#8 Alex Ovechkin (WSH)
#30 Martin Brodeur (NJ)
Marty's shut the door on Ovechkin consistently since the first the two met. He's scored only twice in the 5 games they've played, and neither were anything to write home about. Plus, the "Visor Incident" seems to have given Marty the extra impetus to step up versus A.O. so it should be interesting to see how the two combat each other tonight. It may be the first time in a while that Marty's had a true personal rival, though I suppose when your a goaltender, everyone's your personal rival.
This is a must have game for the Devils. They need to get at least a point from these Caps, as they host the Icelanders on Saturday, and that's a team that was outclassed by Ottawa of all clubs two nights ago. With the Isles in close quarters in terms of points, a win is absolutely imperative tonight for New Jersey.
For the Devils, they simply have to do what they always do when they're winning: Get scoring from anywhere on the forward ranks, get the usual stellar goaltending from Marty (But why oh why do I feel were getting Clemmy tonight?) and have defense not stink to high hell as much as they're capable of and they'll take home a "W". For Washington, the key his additional scoring, as usual. Zubrus, Pettinger, Semin and co. must all chip in. Brian Pothier needs to run the power play efficiently, and the Caps will have a shot.
Prediction: Devils 3, Caps 1. Devils goals from Madden, Gomez, and Langenbrunner.