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Preview: Devils at Blue Jackets

Columbus seeks home-and-home sweep; New Jersey still without captain Andy Greene

by Craig Merz / Correspondent

DEVILS (25-28-12) at BLUE JACKETS (41-17-6)

7 p.m. ET; SNE, SNP, FS-O, MSG+, NHL.TV


Devils team scope

New Jersey Devils captain Andy Greene will miss his third straight game following the death of his father Saturday. Greene is expected to rejoin the Devils for their game at the Colorado Avalanche on Thursday. Forward Miles Wood and defenseman Damon Severson are expected to return from injuries that forced them to miss a 3-0 home loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets on Sunday; it was New Jersey's seventh straight loss (0-5-2). They'll replace forward Kevin Rooney and defenseman Karl Stollery. Backup goaltender Keith Kinkaid will start after Cory Schneider played the past six games. Kinkaid's last start was Feb. 19 at the New York Islanders when he made 26 saves in 6-4 loss. "I've got be ready whenever. I'm just happy to be in," Kinkaid said. "[Columbus] is a good forechecking team. They're very skilled offensively. We've got to follow our game plan and play hard in their zone and generate a few offensive plays." Defenseman Dalton Prout will play against the Blue Jackets for the second time since being traded by Columbus for defenseman Kyle Quincey on March 1. "It was definitely nice to get this out of the way compared to maybe a different situation where we're playing them at the end of the season or maybe even next year," Prout said Tuesday. "It's very different, very weird playing my former team. It was a little weird walking in, but once you get in a game, not much changes."


Blue Jackets team scope

Forward T.J. Tynan will make his NHL debut because of a knee injury to Josh Anderson. Tynan, 25, was chosen by Columbus in the third round (No. 66) of the 2011 NHL Draft and had watched many of his teammates with Cleveland of the American Hockey League get recalled before he did. "I know I'm pretty young," he said. "I tried not to think about it. I just worked hard every day and tried to get better each day." Tynan was an emergency call-up Friday but did not play Saturday at the Ottawa Senators and was returned to Cleveland the next day. However, he was called up again Monday. "I'm just going to focus on playing good hockey and trying to help this team win," he said. "I'm sure it will be an unbelievable experience. It already has been." Sergei Bobrovsky will go for his third straight shutout and fourth for the Blue Jackets in seven games. He was named the NHL's Second Star of the Week after going 2-0-1 with a 0.33 goals-against average and .989 save percentage. The Blue Jackets are 6-2-1 in their past nine games; they are tied with the Pittsburgh Penguins for second place in the Metropolitan Division with 88 points, seven behind the Washington Capitals for first. 


Devils projected lineup

Taylor Hall -- Travis Zajac -- Kyle Palmieri

Pavel Zacha -- Adam Henrique -- Devante Smith-Pelly

Miles Wood -- Blake Coleman -- Nick Lappin

Beau Bennett -- Joseph Blandisi - Stefan Noesen

Jon Merrill -- Ben Lovejoy

John Moore -- Steven Santini

Damon Severson -- Dalton Prout

Keith Kinkaid

Cory Schneider

Scratched: Andy Greene, Kevin Rooney, Karl Stollery

Injured: Michael Cammalleri (shoulder), Jacob Josefson (upper body)


Blue Jackets projected lineup

Brandon Saad -- Alexander Wennberg - Nick Foligno

Boone Jenner -- Brandon Dubinsky -- Cam Atkinson

Scott Hartnell -- Sam Gagner -- Oliver Bjorkstrand

Lauri Korpikoski -- William Karlsson -- T.J. Tynan

Zach Werenski -- Seth Jones

Jack Johnson -- David Savard

Ryan Murray -- Markus Nutivaara

Sergei Bobrovsky

Joonas Korpisalo

Scratched: Scott Harrington, Kyle Quincey

Injured: Josh Anderson (knee), Matt Calvert (oblique strain), Lukas Sedlak (oblique strain)


Status report

Nutivaara returns after Quincey played the past three games following the trade.


Who's hot  

Palmieri has nine points (five goals, four assists) in his past seven games. Zajac has eight points (three goals, five assists) in his past eight games. … Gagner has goals in consecutive games after going 30 games without a goal. Bjorkstrand has six points (three goals, three assists) in nine games since his recall from Cleveland. The Blue Jackets have killed 21 of 22 power plays (95.5 percent) in their past eight games.

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