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SIMULATED GAME RECAP: Devils 6, Flames 4

Led by Schneiders 98 saves, and two goals by Zacha, the Devils down the Flames

by Catherine Bogart / NewJerseyDevils.com

Disclaimer: This game was simulated using EA Sports NHL 20 and aired live on the Devils social media platforms

NEWARK, NJ - Cory Schneider's career-high 98 saves on 102 shots propelled the Devils to a 6-4 win over the Flames, Thursday at Prudential Center. The Devils goaltender's career night was monumental in the team's effort against their Canadian opponent.

"I feel pretty good, it was a lot of work but I'm in pretty good shape right now, so it felt like it wasn't too taxing," said Schneider. "I was seeing the puck well so, I was limiting my extra movement, being in the right spot."

New Jersey also saw three-point performances from Pavel Zacha and Miles Wood. Zacha had two goals and one assist, including contributing the fourth and final goals for the Devils. Wood scored the Devils third goal of the night, on the power play in the second period.

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New Jersey will face the Islanders in their next simulated NHL 20 game. Game time is 7:00 p.m. ET and you can watch on njd.TV, the Devils Facebook, Twitter or Youtube.

In the opening 20 seconds, Wood and Palmieri passed back and forth, until Wood shot, but with no room, the Devils remained scoreless. The Devils had another close chance on goal in the first minute but Cam Talbot had a huge glove save.

Kyle Palmieri intercepts a pass in Calgary's zone, went up ice on a breakaway, but missed.

Michael McLeod opened the scoring for the Devils, with 10:39 on the clock in the first period. McLeod scored on his own rebound, quickly throwing the puck back on net after his initial shot on goal was stopped by Talbot.

The Devils continued their offensive pressure on Calgary following their goal. There were several additional close chances on net but Talbot came up strong against the Devils.

Devils went on the penalty kill for the first time in the final five minutes of the game, after Damon Severson was sent to the box. Although Calgary had several shots on goal, Cory Schneider's strong play kept Calgary from scoring in the man-advantage.

Calgary scored with 11 seconds left in the first period to tie the game. After a long period of possession in their zone, Mikael Backlund scored on the doorstep to make it 1-1.

At the end of the first period, Calgary outshot New Jersey 34-25, with both goaltenders letting up one goal a piece.

The game remained tied at one until eight minutes into the second period when Matthew Tkachuk scored for the Flames. Tkachuk and TJ Brodie, on the odd-man rush, traded the puck back and forth before Tkachuk went high on Schneider to make it 2-1 Flames.

Jack Hughes scores on the rebound to tie it up for the Devils five minutes later. Hughes, with room, goes high on Talbot after he gets the rebound from Janne Kuokkanen's shot. McLeod was credited the secondary assist on the goal, which was his second point of the night.

The Devils took the lead back with late in the second period with a power play goal from Miles Wood. Calgary's Jankowski was sent to the box for tripping with just over three minutes left in the period. Pavel Zacha feeds it to Miles Wood who's quick shot gets past Calgary's goaltender.

Matthew Tkachuk would score his second of the night less than 20 seconds later in response to the Devil's power play goal. Tkachuk's initial shot bounced off of Schneider, but Tkachuk found his rebound and and scored to make it 3-3 late in the second period.

Schneider stopped 29 out of the 31 shots he faced in the second period. The Devils had scored on two of the 39 shots in the second period, including once on the power play.

Pavel Zacha's scored in the first two minutes of the final frame gave the Devils a 4-3 lead. Kyle Palmieri walked in the puck to the Devils offensive zone, saw Zacha open right on the doorstep, and passed it. Zacha's quick shot brought the Devils lead back for the third time tonight.

Kuokkanen was called for hooking with 17:12 on the clock, but the Devils penalty kill came up strong once again against the Flames.

Nico Hischier would score five minutes into the third period to give the Devils a 5-3 lead. Hischier, got a pass from Kyle Palmieri, made room and beat Talbot from the low slot. Palmieri continued to be a strong playmaker for the Devils with primary assists on two straight goals for the Devils.

Pavel Zacha scored his second goal of the night, this time on the power play, 17 seconds into the man-advantage. Zacha grabbed the rebound from Gusev's shot and shot blocker side hip to get past Talbot, making it 6-3 Devils.

For the second time tonight, the Flames scored in the final minute of the period, when Mangiapane scored with 52 seconds left. Even with the late goal, the Devils held strong as New Jersey beat the Calgary Flames 6-4.

Miles Wood and Pavel Zacha led the team in scoring, each contributing three points. Wood had one goal and two assists while Zacha had two goals and one assist, including the final Devils goal of the night. Michael McLeod, Jack Hughes and Nico Hischier each had one goal in the win. Hischier's goal in the third period was the game winner.

Although it wasn't a perfect effort by the home team, Devils goaltender Cory Schneider said the team did all they had to do to get the two points tonight.

"It's fun playing spoiler, for a team like Calgary they're trying to make the playoffs," said Schneider post game. "It wasn't a perfect game by us, but we did what we had to do, we got the goals scored, you're going to give up shots against good teams, but your goalie gotta make good saves, and keep your team in it. We found a way to win it and that's what we're trying to do, down the stretch."

Up next, the Devils will play a simulated game against the Islanders on Saturday.

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