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Tallinder could return Saturday

Thursday, 12.29.2011 / 2:51 PM / News
By Eric Marin
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Tallinder could return Saturday



 
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Defenseman Henrik Tallinder could be back in the lineup as early as Saturday, when the Devils host Pittsburgh at 3 p.m.

Tallinder has missed six games with back spasms. He took part in Wednesday's morning skate, but did not play in the 3-1 victory over Buffalo.

"I was skating pretty good yesterday," Tallinder said after Thursday's practice. "Then I had a workout here during the game. I don't expect [the injury] to go back to where it was. Knock on wood."

Peter DeBoer indicated the big blueliner is likely to play against the Penguins. The Devils (20-15-1) have won eight of their last 11.

"I think so," said the coach. "We wanted to get through a full practice, get a little contact in. I thought he looked good to me. We'll see how he wakes up [Friday], but he looks good."

Defenseman Alexander Urbom was assigned to Albany (AHL), paving the way for Tallinder's possible return.

"We've got [Matt] Taormina here as an insurance policy if for some reason he can't go," DeBoer said.

Tallinder averages 21:42 minutes of ice time, second only to Adam Larsson among Devils defensemen.

Petr Sykora scored twice Wednesday, picking up his ninth and 10th goals of the season. The Devils have a League-high seven players with double-digit goal totals. Philadelphia is next with six, while Ottawa and Vancouver each have five.

A balanced attack has been one of the keys to the Devils' success in the first half.

"It's been critical," DeBoer said. "Obviously, when I took the job in the summer, when you look at the New Jersey Devils last year, the goals for and the shots for are something that jumps off the page at you. Something that we had to find a way to correct and do it without dramatically affecting our defensive game. That's been the goal since Day 1 and I think we're slowly getting to the point where we're getting a good balance there."

• Sykora, Anton Volchenkov and Travis Zajac had maintenance days and did not skate Thursday.

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - BOS 82 54 19 9 261 177 117
2 y - PIT 82 51 24 7 249 207 109
3 x - TBL 82 46 27 9 240 215 101
4 x - MTL 82 46 28 8 215 204 100
5 x - NYR 82 45 31 6 218 193 96
6 x - PHI 82 42 30 10 236 235 94
7 x - CBJ 82 43 32 7 231 216 93
8 x - DET 82 39 28 15 222 230 93
9 WSH 82 38 30 14 235 240 90
10 NJD 82 35 29 18 197 208 88
11 OTT 82 37 31 14 236 265 88
12 TOR 82 38 36 8 231 256 84
13 CAR 82 36 35 11 207 230 83
14 NYI 82 34 37 11 225 267 79
15 FLA 82 29 45 8 196 268 66
16 BUF 82 21 51 10 157 248 52

STATS

2013-2014 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Jagr 82 24 43 16 67
P. Elias 65 18 35 -4 53
T. Zajac 80 18 30 3 48
A. Henrique 77 25 18 3 43
M. Zidlicky 81 12 30 -3 42
M. Ryder 82 18 16 -6 34
A. Greene 82 8 24 3 32
E. Gelinas 60 7 22 -3 29
D. Zubrus 82 13 13 1 26
R. Clowe 43 7 19 -10 26
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Schneider 16 15 12 .921 1.97
M. Brodeur 19 14 6 .901 2.51

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