In their final Saturday night home game, the New Jersey Devils dropped their matchup to the Blues in overtime.
After the Devils and Blues played to a 2-2 stalemate through sixty minutes of regulation, a game where the Devils twice tied up the game on goals by Drew Stafford and rookie Joey Anderson, the Blues scored their third goal of the game with just 2.8 seconds left in overtime to defeat New Jersey 3-2.
Here are 10 takeaways from the game:
1. Cory Schneider was the starter in net against the St. Louis Blues and with just four games remaining on the Devils regular season schedule, it marked his second to last appearance in net this season. Against the Blues, the Masterton Trophy Nominee entered the game with a .931 save percentage in his past six games. Against the Blues, Schneider made some unbelievable saves, fought through heavy traffic and made 24 saves on 26 shots in the overtime loss. The game was Schneider's final home game of the season.
2. The Devils trailed 1-0 after 20 minutes of play against St. Louis, although the team did out-shoot the Blues 9-6. Nico Hischier and Joey Anderson each had two shots each. Hischier had perhaps the best chance of the period when Blues goaltender Jake Allen misplayed the puck near his crease. Allen whiffed on the puck with Hischier in close distance. The Devils forward picked up the puck and took a shot which went just wide of the net.
3. Drew Stafford had the Devils on the board at the 4:57 mark of the second period to tie the game at one. Stafford's first power-play marker of the year and fifth goal overall was completed off an excellent feed by Pavel Zacha from below the goal line. Zacha caught Stafford at the left post who sniped it home to bring the score to 1-1.
The goal marks Stafford's third in five games-played and was assisted by Zacha and Kenny Agostino.
4. Zacha continues to grow his game with more consistency this season. The assist was his sixth point in his last six games-played. Over that time, the Czech native has one goal and five assists for 22 points this season in 58 games-played. Last season, Zacha had 25 points in 69 games.
5. The Devils would tie the game for a second time in the middle period when Joey Anderson made the perfect redirect off a Steven Santini shot from the blue-line to tie the game at 2-2.
In his rookie year, Anderson is up to three goals and five points in 31 games as he adjusts to the NHL game. Santini and Travis Zajac assisted on the play. Zajac is up to 26 assists this season which is tied with Damon Severson and Taylor Hall for second on the team. Hischier leads all New Jersey Devils with 28 assists.
6. The New Jersey Devils penalty killers nearly had the night off. It took until there was 2:10 left in the game for the Devils to take their first and only penalty of the night. It was a hooking call on Santini, which the Devils managed to kill off. Meanwhile, the power play had a solid night against the NHL's eighth-ranked penalty kill, going 1-for-3 with the man advantage.
7. The Devils could not end a 10-game losing streak to the Blues. The Devils have not beaten St. Louis since 2014, with their last victory over the Blues coming on January 21, 2014.
8. The matchup with the St. Louis Blues marked the final game against a Western Conference opponent for the Devils. This season New Jersey went 12-13-5 against opponents from the West.
9. It was Fan Appreciation Night presented by M&M'S on the final Saturday night home game of the season. The night included the special event of 'Jersey's Off Our Backs' as well as videos and giveaways to recognize the incredible support of the Devils fans at Prudential Center.
10. Prior to the game, the Devils announced that former Devil Patrik Elias will be spending time with the team for the remainder of the season. Elias will be with the Devils' coaching staff to learn about the intricacies of the job, while he explores the coaching ranks himself.
"I'm just in a backseat, just kind of watching them," Elias told the media prior to the Devils and Blues puck drop. "If [John Hynes] is going to ask about something, then I'll answer. I'm learning these things, and this is a wonderful opportunity for me to watch him and I'm just happy they allowed me to do so."
Elias will be on the ice with the team during practices, while John Hynes will have several tasks delegated to Elias. For his part, Hynes is looking forward to having Elias around the coaching room.
"I'm a big believer in having different opinions," Hynes said pregame. "And he's not totally attached to the situation, so it's nice to get feedback on what he sees in all aspects."
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