NEWARK, N.J. – It was another injury-depleted night for the Devils.
Once again the Devils dressed 11 defensemen and had Eric Gelinas play left wing. Once again the Devils were without Patrick Elias, Adam Henrique and Jacob Josefson.
But after winning two games in a row with a depleted team, this time the Devils couldn’t find a win as their season winds down, falling to Calgary 1-0 on Monday night.
In the first period, it appeared as if the Devils took the 1-0 lead. The goal horn went off, but the referees immediately waved Ryan Carter’s attempt off. Although it appeared Carter, who initially kicked the puck with his skate, knocked the puck in with his stick, the referees ruled it a no goal.
“They looked at carefully, I can’t argue with the decision on the call,” Peter DeBoer told reporters after the game. “I mean I thought it was inconclusive so the call on the ice stands.”
The Devils controlled the puck for most of the game, finishing with 31 shots. New Jersey allowed 22, but gave up the game’s only goal to Mark Giordano 23 seconds into the third period.
Schneider finished with a few key saves, including a stop on New Jersey native Kenny Agostino, who was alone in front of the goalkeeper.
“It’s tough to give that one up starting the third period and put us behind,” Schneider said. “But again we just couldn’t find a way to get that one.”
For two periods of scoreless play, Karri Ramo stopped everything New Jersey tossed his way. He benefitted from some luck, as a few times New Jersey couldn’t capitalize on any scoring chances.
“It wasn’t for effort or even execution,” DeBoer said. “We generated probably twice as many opportunities as they did. We didn’t stick it in the back of the net and it’s a common theme. When you don’t score easily like we haven’t all year, you’re at the mercy of games like this. Your margin of error’s very small.”
With Elias, Henrique and Josefson out, Travis Zajac logged 23:17 minutes, Jaromir Jagr finished with 22:36 and Dainius Zubrus recorded 21:10.
In the first period, it appeared Ryan Carter scored. Carter had kicked the puck, but he seemed to redirect the puck into the net with his stick. After a review, the referees ruled no goal.
The Devils came close to scoring in the second as well, when the puck deflected off Calgary’s Chris Butler. It rolled along the goal line until Kris Russell cleared the puck.
In the third period after they were trailing 1-0 Carter had a backhand chance around 17 minutes but hit the side of the net.
“I think that kind of sums up our year,” Carter said. “Sometimes you outwork teams and you don’t get the result you want and that’s the tough reality of it.”