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Matteau debuts, Pietila golden in return

by Eric Marin / New Jersey Devils

First-round pick Stefan Matteau got his first taste of the NHL on Saturday when he made his debut in the 2012-13 season opener versus the Islanders. Skating on a line with Jacob Josefson and Cam Janssen/Ilya Kovalchuk, Matteau registered three shots in 7:26 of ice time (12 shifts).

Stefan Matteau

Matteau (29th overall, 2012) became the ninth player in Devils history to debut in the first game of the season following his selection. The previous eight were John MacLean (1983), Kirk Muller (1984), Craig Wolanin (1985), Anders Carlsson (1986), Brendan Shanahan (1987), Sergei Starikov (1989), Andreas Salomonsson (2001), and Adam Larsson (2011).

At 18 years, 10 months and 28 days old, Matteau is the eighth youngest ever to suit up for the Devils. Larsson was seventh at 18 years, 10 months, 26 days.

Scott Niedermayer was the youngest at 18 years, one month and 15 days.

LW Blake Pietila has been golden for Michigan Tech (WCHA) since helping Team USA capture the 2013 World Junior Championship. In his first home game since returning from Ufa, Pietila put up two goals and an assist to lead the Huskies to a 4-0 win over Bemidji St. on Friday. He scored the tying goal in Saturday's 2-2 stalemate to cap a four-point weekend (3g-1a) against the Beavers.

Pietila has 13 goals and three assists in 21 games this season.

LW Reid Boucher extended his points streak to three games (7g-1a) with a goal and an assist for Sarnia on Sunday. Boucher, who has scored in six of nine games this month, leads the OHL with 38 goals.

C Graham Black is riding a five-game points streak (3g-3a) after notching a goal for Swift Current (WHL) on Saturday. Black has three goals and four assists in eight January games and ranks third on the Broncos with 36 points (19g-17a).

D Reece Scarlett leads Swift Current blueliners with 27 points (6g-21a), and stretched his assists streak to three games (4a) with a helper on Saturday.

G Scott Wedgewood guided Trenton (ECHL) to back-to-back wins last week, snapping a personal four-game losing skid. Wedgewood used 26 saves to beat Reading, 4-3 in overtime, on Wednesday. He then stopped 33 of 38 shots in the Titans' 8-5 victory over Elmira on Friday, which included an eight-save relief appearance for the Jackals by Devils prospect Maxime Clermont. Wedgewood is 12-12-2-1 this season with a 3.13 GAA and .899 save percentage.

Clermont posted wins on consecutive days for Elmira last week. He needed 38 saves to top Cincinnati, 3-1, on Tuesday, then delivered 37 saves in a 2-1 triumph over Kalamazoo on Wednesday. He's 9-7-2-1 with a 3.64 GAA and .895 save percentage for the season.

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