Pittsburgh
Penguins
47-24-11
New Jersey
Devils
49-24-9

26 SOG
29 SOG
1st2nd3rdT
PIT
NJD
game preview

Penguins-Devils Preview

Tuesday, 12.26.2006 / 7:30 PM

Associated Press

Share with your Friends


Penguins-Devils Preview
Pittsburgh Penguins vs. New Jersey Devils

The team's future in Pittsburgh is in doubt, but the Penguins have more pressing concerns.

The Penguins (15-13-6) will look to snap a three-game losing streak Tuesday when they visit the New Jersey Devils at Continental Airlines Arena.

Penguins owner and Hall of Famer Mario Lemieux said Thursday that the team will consider relocation while it attempts to reach a deal for a new arena.

"It is time to take control of our own destiny," Lemieux said in a statement.

The team has faced two business-related setbacks recently. On Dec. 15, Canadian businessman Jim Balsillie pulled out of an agreement to buy the team for $175 million.

Last Wednesday, the Pennsylvania state gaming board awarded a slots-machine license in Pittsburgh to a Detroit-based company owner rather than a gaming concern that promised to build a $290 million facility for the Penguins to replace 45-year-old Mellon Arena.

"Accordingly ... the team is off the market," Lemieux said, "and we will begin to explore relocation offers in cities outside Pennsylvania."

On Thursday, the Penguins' losing streak grew after falling 4-3 to Atlanta in a shootout. Their slide comes on the heels of a four-game winning streak.

"I think Pittsburgh is a great hockey town," backup goaltender Jocelyn Thibault said. "It'd be a shame for this team to leave."

Second-year star Sidney Crosby, who leads the NHL with 38 assists and 55 points, forced overtime with 15.3 seconds remaining. That extended his points streak to 10 games, during which Crosby has seven goals and 16 assists.

"It's good we came back," Crosby said. "We've been struggling. Even though we lost in the shootout, we showed lots of character."

Rookie Jordan Staal added his league-leading fifth short-handed goal for Pittsburgh, which dropped to 3-13-1 when trailing after two periods. Staal has 10 goals, tying him with Nashville's Alexander Radulov and Colorado's Wojtek Wolski for fourth among rookies this season.

Pittsburgh has dropped five of its last six games against the Devils, including two of three this season. New Jersey (19-13-3), though, has lost five of its last seven including Saturday's 5-2 defeat at Atlanta.

"The biggest issue tonight was the type of mistakes that we made," Devils coach Claude Julien said. "We kept giving them an opportunity to get back in the game, and at one point, they took the lead over and never looked back.

"We have nobody but ourselves to look at because we made some unacceptable mistakes here tonight."

Zach Parise scored twice for the Devils, who have lost three in a row at home after winning seven straight at the Meadowlands. New Jersey's last home victory was a 2-0 win over Philadelphia on Dec. 8.

Parise has three goals in his last two games, giving him 14 in 35 contests this season. He had 14 in 81 games as a rookie last season, but has been held without a point in three games against the Penguins in 2006-07.

Patrik Elias, the Devils' captain who leads the team with 32 points was a late scratch after taking a shot off his foot in Friday's 4-1 win at Washington.

2006-2007 season series
DateScoreW. Goal
Mar 14 '07PIT 3 at NJD 0J. Ruutu
Mar 08 '07NJD 4 at PIT 3 - SOP. Elias
Feb 27 '07NJD 1 at PIT 0J. Langenbrunner
Feb 16 '07PIT 5 at NJD 4J. Ruutu
Dec 26 '06PIT 0 at NJD 3T. Zajac
Dec 01 '06PIT 2 at NJD 5J. Pandolfo
Oct 24 '06NJD 2 at PIT 4J. Staal
Oct 18 '06NJD 2 at PIT 1J. Langenbrunner
PlayerGPGAP+/-PIMPPGW
GoalieGPRec.GASAGAASv%
PlayerGPGAP+/-PIMPPGW
GoalieGPRec.GASAGAASv%
(c) New Jersey Devils 2013 - All Rights Reserved
newjerseydevils.com is the official web site of the New Jersey Devils, a member team of the National Hockey League ("NHL"). NHL, the NHL Shield, the word mark and image of the Stanley Cup and NHL Conference logos are registered trademarks of the National Hockey League. All NHL logos and marks and NHL team logos and marks as well as all other proprietary materials depicted herein are the property of the NHL and the respective NHL teams and may not be reproduced without the prior written consent of NHL Enterprises, L.P. Copyright © 1999-2013 New Jersey Devils and the National Hockey League. All Rights Reserved.

Privacy Policy | AdChoices | Advertise With Us | Contact Us | Terms of UseEmploymentNHL.com Terms of Use |  Site Map