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GAME: New Jersey Devils (19-7-9-1) at Nashville Predators (17-14-4-2).TIME: Saturday, 8:30 p.m. EST.
The defending Stanley Cup champions will try to overcome both when they close a four-game road trip against the Nashville Predators.
With one win in five games (1-1-2-1), New Jersey has failed to make up ground on first-place Philadelphia in the Atlantic Division, and has seen surging Ottawa pull within two points of it for fourth in the Eastern Conference.
The Devils have played eight of their last nine games on the road, including Thursday's 2-2 tie at Washington.
"We've only been home for a couple of games, it seems, the last month," Stevens said. "It's been tough. Hopefully, we'll make some hay when we get back home."
Brodeur thinks the absence of two key players has hurt.
"We've been playing without Jamie (Langenbrunner) and Turner (Stevenson) for a while," he said. "Those are two go-to guys for us physically and offensively. We were able to survive and do real well without them, but they're important guys."
Langenbrunner hasn't played in more than a month due to a knee injury and hasn't started skating yet. Stevenson is out indefinitely with a groin injury.
Defenseman Kimmo Timonen scored a pair of power-play goals and added an assist Thursday as Nashville rallied for a 3-2 victory over visiting Pittsburgh.
Martin Erat also scored on the power play for the Predators, who are 6-1-2-1 in their last 10 at home.
"It's nice, but what matters to me is first in the standings," Vokoun said. "I want to win every hockey game. Something like this is just stats. For me, the most important thing is that we're back in the eighth spot in the conference."
Right wing Scott Walker has been Nashville's offensive catalyst lately, with five goals and six assists in his last eight games.
The Predators are 0-4 all-time at home against the Devils.
|Jan 03 '04||NJD 2 at NSH 3||D. Legwand|
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