New Jersey Devils’ Michael McLeod, left, reacts as New York Islanders’ Jordan Eberle (7) celebrates with Anders Lee (27) after scoring a goal during the first period of an NHL hockey game Thursday, Jan. 21, 2021, in Uniondale, N.Y. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)
- The New York Islanders are -162 road favorites on Sunday, March 14th against the New Jersey Devils
- Robert Duff lost both of his Friday picks, leaving his NHL record at 18-11 (+5.38 units won)
- This will be the third meeting between these two teams in a span of four days
By the time they take the ice on Sunday, it’s a fair bet to suggest that the New York Islanders and New Jersey Devils will have had their fill of each other. It’s their third meeting in four days.
Entering Saturday’s road date with the Devils, the Islanders were riding a seven-game winning streak. They beat New Jersey 5-3 on Friday to gain that seventh straight victory.
The Isles are -162 road favorites to win at New Jersey on Sunday.
Islanders vs Devils Odds
Odds as of March 13th at DraftKings.
Puck drop for this game at the Prudential Center is set for 5pm ET. The game is being broadcast by MSG and MSG+.
Isles’ Identity Returns
When the Devils put three goals in the Islanders net during Friday’s setback, it marked the first time during the Isles’ seven-game win stretch that they’d surrendered more than two goals in a game. The Islanders sport a 1.55 GAA during the seven-game stretch.
That defense-first identity took the Isles to the Eastern Conference Finals a year ago. It had deserted them somewhat to start this season. They allowed four or more goals in five of their first 16 games.
The Isles have since tightened up. Over the past 11 games, New York hasn’t allowed more than three goals in regulation. And three have gone in the Islanders’ net just twice over that span. They are allowing 2.2 goals per game, third-best in the NHL.
Overall, the Isles were 9-0-1 through the past 10 games prior to Saturday’s meeting with the Devils.
Devils Digging Holes
New Jersey was looking like it could be a playoff contender in the rugged East Division after opening the season 6-3-2. However, the current 2-9-1 skid is proving to be the Devils’ undoing.
In Thursday’s meeting with the Isles, New York raced out to a 4-0 lead before the Devils scored three third-period goals to make the final score more respectable. Two nights earlier, they fell behind 4-1 to the Washington Capitals. Again they tried to rally and earned a point for a 5-4 overtime loss.
The New Jersey Devils penalty kill. #NJDevils pic.twitter.com/GDgx5F67fo
— Adam Grassani (@AGrassani6) February 26, 2021
Producing is proving to be a problem for New Jersey this season. The Devils scored two goals or fewer in 12 of their first 23 games. Their 2.52 goals per game ranks 28th in the NHL.
Special teams are also an issue. New Jersey rates 29th on the power play (12.1%) and dead last in the penalty kill (67.1%).
The Islanders will be without captain Anders Lee for the foreseeable future, and that’s going to be a concern. He leads the team with 12 goals.
#Isles Anders Lee crawling on the ice in intense pain as he gets tripped up with a #NJDevils player. Not a good sight for Islanders fans 👀 pic.twitter.com/2qBGnatL0k
— Hockey Hound (@HockeyHoundShow) March 12, 2021
Lee’s ailment is being listed as a lower-body injury, but he was clearly favoring his right leg following a entanglement with New Jersey’s Pavel Zacha during Thursday’s game.
All six Islanders defensemen registered a point in Thursday’s win. The Isles are the midst of playing 19 games in 33 days. Entering Saturday, they were 8-0-1 so far during this stretch.
#NJDevils coach Lindy Ruff was asked this morning if #Isles should be considered among the elite #NHL teams.
“Yeah. I think they proved that last year in the playoffs.”
— Brian Compton (@BComptonNHL) March 13, 2021
The Islanders had also won three of four from the Devils this season. At New Jersey, New York is 4-1 straight up over the past four visits. Overall, the Devils were 2-7 SU in their last nine when facing the Isles.
The total had gone under in six of the past seven games between these two teams.
Best Bet: New York Islanders -162, 1 unit.
An industry veteran, Bob literally taught the course on the history of sports at Elder College. He has worked as a Sports Columnist for Postmedia, appeared as a guest on several radio stations, was the Vice President of the Society For International Hockey Research in Ontario, and written 25 books.