By John Schweibacher
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The New Jersey Devils have dropped into the basement in the Eastern Conference as their winless streak reached 10 games with road losses to the bottom two clubs in the Western Conference.
New Jersey lost its 10th in a row, 5-4 to the Coyotes on Saturday night in Arizona. The winless streak is the Devils’ longest since going 0-6-4 from March 25 to April 15 in 2013.
The Devils have not gone winless in 11 games since the 1990-91 season, when they went 0-7-4 from Dec. 27 to Jan. 22. The New Jersey club record for futility is 18 (0-14-4) from Oct. 20 to Nov. 26 in 1982.
The five goals allowed by the Devils equaled their most allowed in a game against the Coyotes since the club relocated to Arizona for the 1996-97 season.
New Jersey lost 5-3 to Phoenix on Oct. 27, 2011, with Johan Hedberg allowing all five goals. The Jets/Coyotes franchise record for goals in a game against the Devils is eight, which occurred twice: an 8-1 Winnipeg Jets home-ice win on Nov. 9, 1986, and an 8-5 Jets victory at the Meadowlands on Feb, 22, 1984.
Rookie defenseman Jakob Chychrun had one goal and two assists for the Coyotes in the win over the Devils. The Elias Sports Bureau noted that the 18-year-old Chychrun is the youngest defenseman ever to score three points in one game for the Jets/Coyotes franchise.
The player game finder on Hockey-Reference.com adds that Chychrun is also the youngest defenseman to register three points against New Jersey since the 1987-88 season. Here are the five youngest:
• Jakob Chychrun, Arz, 18 years, 345 days (3/11/17)
• Paul Mara, TB, 20 years, 126 days (1/11/00)
• John Carlson, Was, 20 years, 272 days (10/9/10)
• Tyler Myers, Buf, 20 years, 282 days (11/10/10)
• Al Iafrate, Tor, 21 years, 203 days (10/10/87)
Prior to the loss Saturday night, the Devils had failed to score more than two goals in five straight games. Since the 2005-06 season, New Jersey has scored two or fewer goals in more games than any team in the NHL (through March 12):
• Devils, 493, (112-310-71)
• Edmonton, 489, (61-366-62)
• Florida, 476, (74-322-80)
• Arizona, 469, (77-332-60)
• Minnesota, 459, (96-299-64)
• Los Angeles, 450, (87-295-68)
On Thursday night, Francois Beauchemin’s tiebreaking goal with 1:14 left to play in the third period gave the Avalanche a 3-2 victory over the Devils in Colorado. Beauchemin’s game-winning goal was his first this season and the 14th in his 13-season NHL career.
According to Elias, Beauchemin, at 36 years, 278 days old, is the second-oldest defenseman ever to score a game-winning goal in regular-season play for the Quebec/Colorado franchise. Adam Foote was 37 years old when he scored the decisive goal in the Avs’ win at Washington on Feb. 20, 2009.
Thanks to the player game finder on hockey-reference.com, we can add that Beauchemin became the fourth-oldest defenseman to score a goal against New Jersey since the 1987-88 season:
• Marek Zidlicky, NYI, 38 years, 313 days (12/13/15)
• Larry Robinson, LA, 38 years, 242 days (1/30/90)
• Grant Ledyard, Bos, 37 years, 106 days (3/5/99)
• Francois Beauchemin, Col, 36 years, 278 days (3/9/17)
• Aaron Miller, Van, 36 years, 129 days (12/18/07)
On Tuesday night, the Devils were shut out by the Blue Jackets 2-0 in the road half of their home-and-home with Columbus, two nights after being shut out by them 3-0 in Newark.
Sergei Bobrovsky made 33 saves in the win, becoming the first goalie to shut out the Devils in consecutive games. Only six other goalies had recorded two shutouts against New Jersey in the same season:
• Don Beaupre, Was (1990-91)
• Dominik Hasek, Buf (2000-01)
• Patrick Roy, Col (2001-02)
• Henrik Lundqvist, NYR (2007-08)
• Martin Biron, Phi (2007-08)
• Ilya Bryzgalov, Phi (2011-12)
Plus: Kyle Palmieri. Devils right wing had two goals in the loss to the Coyotes and now leads the Devils with 22 goals and 11 multi-point games this season.
Minus: Hall of a Chance. Trailing 5-4 at Arizona, Taylor Hall was awarded a penalty shot at 17:22 of the third period, but was unsuccessful in his attempt and is now 1-for-4 in his career on penalty shots.