By John Schweibacher
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The Devils have allowed seven short-handed goals this season, the most in the NHL, and three of them have come in three of the games during their current four-game losing streak.
In fact, all but one of the short-handed goals the Devils have surrendered have come in a loss. Here is the list of the seven short-handed goals allowed by New Jersey so far in 2011-12:
· 12/3 Alex Burmistrov 4-2 L @ WPG
· 11/30 Jay McClement 4-2 L @ COL
· 11/26 Michael Grabner 3-2 L vs. NYI
· 11/21 Stephen Weiss 4-3 L @ FLA
· 11/11 Jason Chimera 3-1 L vs. WAS
· 11/8 Brandon Sutter 3-2 W vs. CAR
· 10/29 Sheldon Souray 3-1 L @ DAL (empty-net)
New Jersey allowed eight short-handed goals last season and have only given up a double-figure total once (11 in 2006-07) since 1992-93 when they allowed an all-time worst 19.
Martin Brodeur allowed three first-period goals in his loss at Colorado on Wednesday and he was pulled from his start at Minnesota on Friday when he gave up his third goal in the first 8:17.
According to the Elias Sports Bureau, it was only the second time in Brodeur’s NHL career that he allowed three or more first-period goals in each of two consecutive games, regular season or playoffs. The only other time Brodeur did that came back on October 13th and 15th, 2005, in losses to the Rangers at Madison Square Garden (three 1st period goals against) and at home against Carolina (three 1st period goals against).
Brodeur also tied his career high with six goals allowed on 25 shots in that Devils’ 6-1 loss at Colorado. It was the 12th time that Brodeur allowed a half-dozen goals, but the only other times he did it while playing the entire game and facing fewer than 30 shots were December 16, 2000 at Philadelphia (26 SOG), and December 31, 2005 against Toronto (22).
Here are the previous 11 games in which Brodeur gave up six goals:
· 4/1/09 6-1 loss at PIT
· 3/7/09 7-3 loss at NYI
· 10/21/06 8-1 loss at OTT
· 10/12/06 7-6 SO win vs. TOR
· 3/23/06 6-5 OT loss at ATL
· 3/14/06 6-1 loss vs. NYI
· 3/11/06 6-3 loss at PIT
· 12/31/05 6-3 loss vs. TOR
· 12/16/00 6-3 loss at PHI
· 11/14/98 6-1 loss at PHI
· 11/26/93 6-6 tie at STL
Since Martin Brodeur’s rookie season of 1993-94, only two other New Jersey Devils goaltenders have surrendered six or more goals in a game; Scott Clemmensen, who allowed six in a 6-2 loss in Pittsburgh on December 29th, 2005 and Jeff Reese, who gave up six in a 6-2 defeat at Hartford on October 19th, 1996.
Brodeur’s departure 8:17 into his start in Minnesota was the second earliest of his career, topped only by the 8:00 he lasted back on New Year’s Day last season in Carolina. Here are the five shortest starts of Brodeur’s career:
· 1/1/11 8:00 6-3 (ND) loss at Carolina
· 12/2/11 8:17 4-2 (L) loss at Minnesota
· 5/3/95 13:11 5-4 (ND) loss at Buffalo
· 2/12/94 13:50 5-3 (L) loss at Boston
· 4/14/95 14:00 6-3 (ND) win vs. NY Islanders
David Clarkson surpassed the 600 penalty minute mark this past week, becoming the 13th player in New Jersey’s history to register that much time in the penalty box. Here are dirty dozen Devils who have spent the most minutes in the sin bin:
· Ken Daneyko 2,516
· Randy McKay 1,418
· John MacLean 1,168
· Scott Stevens 1,007
· Pat Verbeek 943
· Joe Cirella 938
· Bobby Holik 863
· Colin White 848
· Krzysztof Oliwa 724
· David Maley 683
· Claude Lemieux 627
· Mike Peluso 619
The Devils complete their road trip and end a stretch of 15 of 21 games away from New Jersey this week as they face the Maple Leafs before heading home to take on the Senators and Canadiens.
New Jersey lost its lone meeting so far this season to the Leafs, 5-3, back on November 2nd at Prudential Center. Joffrey Lupul had the hat trick in the win for Toronto, the 3rd by a Maple Leafs player against the Devils in club history, joining Jim Korn (3/7/84 at Toronto) and Wendell Clark (1/11/92 at the Meadowlands).
The Devils face the Senators for the first time this season Thursday night in Newark. New Jersey went just 1-3-0 against Ottawa in 2010-11 with two of those defeats coming during the Devils’ otherwise torrid 23-4-2 run from early January to mid-March.
New Jersey and Montreal also meet for the first time in 2011-12 Saturday afternoon at Prudential Center. The Devils and Canadiens split their four games last season but neither team was able to win on their home ice as the Habs took both contests in New Jersey while the Devils came away with a pair of victories in Montreal.
Minus: Four Shame. Devils’ current four-game losing streak is their longest of the season and their first since dropping the first four games back in January of last season.
Plus: Travis Zajac. Injured center is skating again and is expected to return before Christmas.
What’s wrong with the Devs? Be heard in the comments below…