New Jersey
Devils
43-25-12-2
Carolina
Hurricanes
28-34-14-6

20 SOG
26 SOG
1st2nd3rdT
NJD
CAR
game preview

New Jersey Devils vs. Carolina Hurricanes

Saturday, 03.06.2004 / 7:00 PM

Associated Press

Devils-Hurricanes Preview

GAME: New Jersey Devils (34-20-11-2) at Carolina Hurricanes (21-28-13-4).

TIME: Saturday, 7 p.m. EST.

The New Jersey Devils made a trade Friday they hope will get them going in the right direction.

Jan Hrdina is expected to be in the lineup when the struggling Devils meet the Carolina Hurricanes in the finale of their five-game road trip.

New Jersey dealt winger Mike Rupp, who scored the winning goal in Game 7 of last year's Stanley Cup finals against Anaheim, and a second-round pick in this year's draft to Phoenix for veteran center Hrdina.

The Devils then went out and lost for the fourth time in five games, 3-2 in overtime at Tampa Bay.

The Devils are hoping the 28-year-old Hrdina, who had 11 goals and 15 assists in 55 games for the Coyotes, has fully recovered from a broken toe that slowed him early in the season.

Hrdina, who has 90 goals and 167 assists in 425 career games, could provide an instant spark for the Devils, who are in danger of falling into seventh place in the Eastern Conference. New Jersey sits just three points ahead of hard-charging Montreal with 15 games to play.

New Jersey received a scare on Friday as right wing Brian Gionta was cut on the side of his nose after being hit by a shot early in the second period. He received stitches, but did not return. His status for Saturday is unknown.

Carolina kept its unlikely playoff hopes alive as Kevyn Adams's breakaway goal with less than a second left in overtime gave the Hurricanes a 3-2 win at Atlanta on Friday.

Rod Brind'Amour and Jeff O'Neill had goals in the second period for the Hurricanes, who have not lost in regulation in their last five road games (3-0-1-1).

"It's one of the most exciting regular season games I've ever been part of," said Carolina goaltender Kevin Weekes, who had 32 saves.

The Hurricanes are 15 points behind the eighth-place New York Islanders for the final playoff spot in the East, with 16 games to play.

STANDINGS: Devils - 81 points, 2nd place, 7 PB, Atlantic Division. Hurricanes - 59 points, 4th place, 29 PB, Southeast Division.

TEAM LEADERS: Devils - Patrik Elias, 30 goals and 62 points; Scott Gomez, 42 assists; Colin White, 75 PIM. Hurricanes - Josef Vasicek, 16 goals; Justin Williams, 24 assists; Josef Vasicek and Justin Williams, 34 points; Jesse Boulerice, 106 PIM.

SPECIAL TEAMS (through March 4): Devils - Power play: 15.6 percent (38 for 243), 18th in NHL. Penalty killing: 84.6 percent (192 for 227), 12th. Hurricanes - Power play: 11.6 percent (35 for 303), 30th in NHL. Penalty killing: 81.9 percent (236 for 288), 24th.

GOALTENDERS: Devils - Martin Brodeur (31-20-10, 10 SO, 2.04 GAA); Scott Clemmensen (1-1-0, 1, 1.53). Hurricanes - Weekes (20-24-10, 6, 2.23); Arturs Irbe (1-0-1, 1.92).

SEASON SERIES: Devils, 2-1.

LAST MEETING: Feb. 14; Devils, 4-1. At East Rutherford, N.J., Gomez and Gionta set each other up for first-period goals, helping the Devils avoid their first four-game losing streak since November 2001.

ROAD/HOME RECORDS: Devils - 16-9-7-1 on the road; Hurricanes - 11-13-8-2 at home.


Associated Press
2003-2004 season series
DateScoreW. Goal
Mar 06 '04NJD 4 at CAR 1B. Rafalski
Feb 14 '04CAR 1 at NJD 4B. Gionta
Jan 21 '04CAR 2 at NJD 1J. O'Neill
Oct 11 '03NJD 2 at CAR 1J. Langenbrunner
PlayerGPGAP+/-PIMPPGW
GoalieGPRec.GASAGAASv%
PlayerGPGAP+/-PIMPPGW
GoalieGPRec.GASAGAASv%
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