John Hynes sends Devils clear message regarding penalties

October 21, 2017 - The Star Ledger - View Full Article

John Hynes took another step to help curb the Devils' penalty issues.

NEWARK -- Penalties have plagued the Devils early in the season, and coach John Hynes sent a clear message to his team on Friday night.

Forward Miles Wood did not return to the ice after taking a high sticking double minor at 13:59 of the second period, and forward Kyle Palmieri sat for over 10 minutes after a cross checking penalty earlier in the second period.

"Collectively, players and coaches know we've taken too many," Hynes said. "So I just think tonight, we made it simple.

"Sometimes the best way to put an end to it is, if they're going to be inadvertent and we're going to continue to do that, then guys will lose ice time."

Devils place Schneider on IR

Wood also received a minor for holding an opponent's stick in the first period, giving him six total penalty minutes for the night. Following Palmieri's cross check at 6:07 in the second period, he did not take a shift until the 18:50 mark of the period.

After Wood's high sticking penalty, the Devils' didn't go to the box again. 

The Devils entered Friday's game third in the NHL in penalty minutes at 110. While the Devils' penalty kill stopped all five power-play opportunities for the Sharks, the Devils know penalties can cost them on other nights.

"Penalties were an issue again," Devils captain Andy Greene said. "Way too many minor penalties, and it's good to see the PK tonight. That's one positive after a rough night last night. But it's tough. Sometimes you start getting to your games and all of a sudden there's one penalty or two penalties, and then it just ruins the flow of the game and some momentum."

Penalties will likely be one of the Devils' focuses during their week without a game, where they are expected to practice five times. When the Devils ran into some penalty trouble last season, Hynes would stop practices to have players skate sprints if a penalty was committed.

Hynes is again trying to nip penalties in the bud, and he took another step on Friday.

"I think we would all agree we've taken far too many penalties," Hynes said. "We've addressed it, we've talked about it, we've watched video of the penalties, we've reviewed the rules."

Chris Ryan may be reached at Follow him on Twitter @ChrisRyan_NJ. Find Devils on Facebook.


Devils' offense quiet in shutout loss to Sharks | Rapid reaction

October 20, 2017 - The Star Ledger - View Full Article

The Sharks beat the Devils, 3-0.

NEWARK -- For the first time this season, the Devils' offense was quiet.

San Jose Sharks goalie Martin Jones stopped all 28 shots he face while shutting out the Devils, 3-0, on Friday at the Prudential Center.

The Devils dropped the second leg of a back-to-back and fell to 6-2-0 this season.

Keith Kinkaid made 30 saves in his second start of the season, but the Sharks did more than enough to support Jones' effort.

Devils' Cup odds make jump

San Jose entered the game last in the NHL in even-strength goals, but three of that variety started the scoring.

Melker Karlsson scored off a feed in front from Tomas Hertl at 14:11 in the first period for a 1-0 lead, and the Sharks doubled their advantage when Joe Pavelski tipped in a Justin Braun shot at 5:49 of the second period.

The Devils killed off a four-minute high sticking penalty by Miles Wood late in the second period, but the Sharks countered by getting a Joonas Donskoi goal at 18:50 for a 3-0 lead.

While the Devils struck for two goals on 11 shots in the second period, the Devils sent just six on goal. They struggled to generate much offensive zone time throughout the night.

Schneider's injury

Goalie Cory Schneider was placed on injured reserve prior to Friday's game with a lower body injury, but the Devils are hopeful Friday will be the only game he misses. The Devils have a week before they play again, when Schneider will be eligible to be activated.  

"Cory was going to backup tonight anyways," Devils coach John Hynes said, "We'll see how he does over the next couple days and hopefully he's back at practice early next week."

The Devils are off on Saturday, and Hynes ruled out Schneider from practicing on Sunday. He is hopeful the veteran goalie will return to the ice early next week. Schneider finished the second period on Thursday, which is when the injury occurred. Hynes called it a "tweak," and with how it played out, he remained optimistic it won't be a long-term issue. 

"That's why we're not thinking it's overly serious," Hynes said. "He did finish the period and after getting evaluated on it, it was a smart move to pull him."

Next up

The Devils have one week before their next game. They will host the Ottawa Senators at the Prudential Center on Friday, Oct. 27, before the Arizona Coyotes visit The Rock on Saturday, Oct. 28.

The Devils will be off on Saturday and resume practice on Sunday.

Chris Ryan may be reached at Follow him on Twitter @ChrisRyan_NJ. Find Devils on Facebook.