The holidays are a perfect time to take a moment to reflect and express our gratitude, and this Thanksgiving, the Devils have plenty to be thankful for.
New Jersey has defied hockey "experts," exceeding preseason expectations and currently owning the Metropolitan Division's second best record (12-5-4, 28pts). The Devils have battled through injuries to top talents like Kyle Palmieri, Marcus Johansson and Travis Zajac, and continue to thrive.
As New Jersey fights to remain at the top of the standings, here are a few things to be thankful for this Thanksgiving:
Johnny on the Spot
It's hard to be Moore clutch than John Moore (see what we did there?) … Moore has six career overtime goals, the most by any NHL defenseman since 3-on-3 overtime was implemented in 2015-16, and has both the Devils' overtime goals this season.
Video: NJD@OTT: Moore buries wicked wrister for OT winner
Miles Wood's First Career Hatty
After being a healthy scratch for the Devils' season opener, Miles Wood has stepped up in a big way. Wood has injected speed, grit and timely scoring to the Devils' lineup, and has not missed a game. We're extremely grateful for Wood's first career hat trick, which lifted the Jersey's Team to victory in a 7-5 thriller in Chicago.
Taylor Hall's Hot Start
Video: NJD@CHI: Hall goes five-hole to earn 400th NHL point
It's safe to say that Taylor Hall is Taylor Made for the Devils' new up-tempo style. Hall is averaging just over a point per game (6g-15a in 20 games played) as New Jersey's point leader. Last November, Hall suffered a torn meniscus, which caused the forward to miss 10 games, so this season we're thankful to see him remain on the ice.
Throughout the month of November, Adam Henrique has been growing his iconic cookie duster alongside other teammates in hopes of inspiring donations for and conversations about men's health. We're grateful for the opportunity to bring awareness to men's mental and physical health issues … we'll also be relieved when the players shave and no longer draw comparisons to Burt Reynolds.
Fueling First Place with Youth
Video: NJD@MIN: Butcher roofs a rocket from the circle
The Devils reignited their lineup this season with speed, youth and tenacity. The 2017-18 Devils' average age is 26.4, which is 3.9 years younger than the club in 2014-15. The eight Devils that are 23 years old or younger have combined for 702 points through Nov. 23, 44 of which have come from rookies (Butcher 16, Hischier 15, Bratt 14). Injuries to veterans have forced the kids to grow up quickly, and they have answered the call.
Brian Boyle's Return to the Ice
Video: EDM@NJD: Boyle pots first goal since cancer diagnosis
Without question, the return of Brian Boyle to the lineup is the thing the Devils are most thankful for this Thanksgiving. Following his chronic myeloid leukemia diagnosis, there was no better feeling than watching Boyle score his first goal as a Devil. Boyle continues to help raise awareness through the NHL's Hockey Fights Cancer campaign and remains an inspiration to us all.