Game Preview: Columbus Takes On New Jersey

(Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)
(Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images) /

The Columbus Blue Jackets are looking to get back on track against Metropolitan Division opponents tonight when they take on the New Jersey Devils.

After losing to Pittsburgh 3-2 on Sunday night after a questionable no-call on Sidney Crosby for goaltender interference, Columbus looks to get back to their winning ways.

New Jersey will certainly bring the energy and momentum after defeating Vancouver 7-2 last night and will be stingy defensively, as they’ve been all season.

The Blue Jackets and the Devils have had a back-and-forth battle all season, with Columbus having the slight edge, winning two of the three matchups this season.

Columbus and projected starting netminder Elvis Merzlikins will need to be prepared to face lots of shots in the zone tonight, as New Jersey’s victory over Vancouver last night was the fourth time in the last thirty days where the Devils have scored six goals or more. Tonight will be the first time Merzlikins has faced New Jersey all season, as Joonas Korpisalo had started between the pipes in the three previous meetings.

For Columbus, Zach Werenski was available for the morning skate, but won’t be playing in tonight’s game. Instead, top defensemen Vladislav Gavrikov and Andrew Peeke will be dealt the difficult hand of stopping Jack Hughes and Jesper Bratt, both have been hot streaks lately, with eleven points and five goals, respectfully.

Yegor Sharangovich could also be a problem for Columbus tonight, as he’s riding a four game goal streak, tied with Nico Hischier for the team high. The Devils also have reason to play for the glory of their head coach, Lindy Ruff, who is one win away from tying Paul Maurice at 775 wins, placing Ruff sixth on the NHL’s regular season all-time wins list.

Tonight is Hockey is For Everyone Night at Nationwide Arena. The puck will drop at 7 PM on ESPN+ and Hulu.