May 28, 2024

The New Jersey Devils sought to change their fortunes before the holiday break, and Tyler Toffoli played a pivotal role in achieving that with a well-executed deflection and a bit of puck luck against the Detroit Red Wings.

Timo Meier found the net twice, and Toffoli secured the game-winning goal with just 7:15 remaining as the Devils brought an end to a three-game winless streak, securing a 3-2 victory over the struggling Detroit Red Wings on Saturday night.

Reflecting on the recent games, Toffoli remarked, “Obviously, the past couple of games haven’t gone the way we wanted. The Red Wings played last night, so you’re not going to read too much into it, but we knew that they were tired. We wanted to have the best game possible before the break, and I think that’s what we did.”

Vitek Vanecek made 22 saves and received assistance from a shot hitting the goalpost by Daniel Sprong on a late power play, contributing to the Devils’ first win in a five-game homestand (1-2-1).

Toffoli clinched his first game-winning goal as a Devil by redirecting Jesper Bratt’s shot past Michael Hutchinson, who made 32 saves in his inaugural game as a Red Wing.Red Wings Devils Hockey

Hutchinson commented on the decisive goal, saying, “I think it got deflected twice. It got hit and was going to the corner and got deflected again. Sometimes they hit you, and sometimes they don’t.”

Patrick Kane and c scored for the Red Wings, who have now lost five of their last six games. The game took a toll on Detroit, with fourth-line center Christian Fischer and defenseman Jeff Petry leaving the ice after a collision in the Red Wings’ zone. Both players sustained upper-body injuries.

Red Wings coach Derek Lalonde praised his team’s effort, considering the challenging circumstances, but expressed disappointment in not securing any points. Meier’s third-period goal tied the game, providing a much-needed boost for the Devils.

Meier, reflecting on the victory, said, “We really wanted to leave the rink tonight with a smile on our face. Those couple of days (off) are definitely going to feel good. Just rest up and I think for guys to spend some time with their families and enjoy Christmas and then come back and just get back to work.”

Despite the challenging schedule, the Red Wings captain, Dylan Larkin, emphasized the importance of the upcoming break: “We need this break. We need to hit the reset button, going away for a couple of days.”

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