A-Devils At The Rock

Newark, NJ

The Albany Devils – the top player development team of the New Jersey Devils – will host the Bridgeport Sound Tigers – the no. 1 affiliate of the New York Islanders – on Wednesday, Jan. 21, 2015, in a regular-season American Hockey League game at Newark, New Jersey’s Prudential Center at 7:30 PM. Both teams play in the AHL’s Eastern Conference/Northeast Division.

“We are looking forward to playing one of our biggest rivals at Prudential Center,” said Albany Devils General Manager Chris Lamoriello. “Developing players for the benefit of New Jersey is of the utmost importance to the Albany Devils. The opportunity of playing a home game at our parent club’s facility is a great experience for our players and coaches, as well as our fans in both Albany and New Jersey.”

General admission tickets, set at $10 each, are now on sale now.

Get Your $10 Tickets

The game marks the third/final visit by Albany to the Garden State this season, having already played two games in Atlantic City. The Lowell Devils last played in Newark on Feb. 3, 2010.

This season’s Albany roster had 15 players selected by New Jersey in the NHL Entry Draft, while 14 players in New Jersey’s lineup have seen action with the team’s AHL affiliate. The American Hockey League, now in its 79th season, is the top development league for National Hockey League teams and its players, as all 30 of its member clubs are affiliated with an NHL team. Among those who appeared in at least one NHL game last season, 88.4 percent – 871 players – had experience playing in the AHL. In fact, a total of 347 played in both leagues last year.


Notebook: Newark Bound


Next stop for the Albany Devils is Prudential Center. Albany hosts the Bridgeport Sound Tigers for a 7:30 pm outing at the home of the New Jersey Devils Wednesday. The game is the third and final visit for Albany in the Garden State this season. While the team got to experience the historical wonder that is Atlantic City’s Boardwalk Hall with two games earlier this year, the Devils will now get to take in the sights and sounds of an NHL arena.

Prudential Center isn’t that foreign to the players on Albany’s roster. The team begins every season with training camp at “The Rock” and several players have already played in NHL preseason and regular-season games at the arena.

“I think the biggest thing is just have fun with it. At the end of the day it’s still a big two points against a division opponent,” said Head Coach Rick Kowalsky. “We’ve got to keep our focus, which I’m not concerned about that, and go down and enjoy the amenities of being in an NHL building, and NHL dressing room, because that’s certainly one of the best in the league.”

The team skated Tuesday morning before busing to Newark where they will hold at 10:30 am morning skate Wednesday. Packed with the equipment was the Devils three-game point streak, earning five-of-six points.

Momentum is shifting in Albany’s favor.

“We reinforce the positives and stress a lot of the things we’re doing well in video and in practice,” Kowalsky said. “Make some small tweaks here or there, but I think the guys have just really kind of embraced the fact that we’ve got to play solid defensive hockey and play on the right side.

“We want to win obviously, but we want to play the game the right way and if you do it on most nights you’re going to end up on the right side of it.”

Overtime Needed

The Devils went to overtime twice last week, resulting in a 2-1 win Wednesday against Springfield and a 5-4 setback Saturday at Hershey. Albany has gone to the extra frame 11 times this season and are 3-3 in games decided in overtime and 0-5 in contests decided in the shootout. All three of the Devils OT wins have come at home.

“I think it’s been good,” said Head Coach Rick Kowalsky. “This team is starting to feel like they’re never out of a game and we’ve come back now a couple of times. But it’s also important that they are starting to feel more comfortable in some of those uncomfortable situations.”

Not Yet For Hrabarenka

Last week, Kowalsky indicated that Raman Hrabarenka was getting closer from recovering from an upper-body injury sustained on Nov. 29. He will need more time.

Kowalsky said: “He’s not feeling great right now. The last couple of practices have not gone as well as we thought. So, he won’t be available tomorrow and we’ll see come the weekend, but certainly not really recovering as quickly as maybe we thought he would.”

Whitney’s Back, Bell to ECHL All-Star Game

New Jersey has returned Joe Whitney to Albany Tuesday. Whitney, who will represent the Devils at the 2015 AHL All-Star Classic, was recalled to the NHL on Jan. 13. He is tied with Paul Thompson for the team lead with 33 points (14g-19a).

In an unrelated transaction, Albany returned Myles Bell to Evansville (ECHL). Bell is expected to play in the 2015 ECHL All-Star Classic Wednesday in Orlando.

2015 Bobblehead Reveal

This year’s player bobblehead will be….

The first 1,500 fans in attendance on Saturday, Jan. 31 will receive a bobblehead courtesy of Yankee Trails.


What To Watch For: 19-25


The Albany Devils will host the Bridgeport Sound Tigers for a special midweek game at Prudential Center — the home of the New Jersey Devils. The 7:30 pm fixture marks the third/final visit by Albany to the Garden State this season, having already played two games in Atlantic City. The Lowell Devils last played in Newark on Feb. 3, 2010. Tickets are just $10.


The annual “GE KIds In Free Day” is Saturday when the Devils host the Worcester Sharks at Times Union Center. All children 12-and-under will receive free admission when accompanied by an adult with a ticket to the 2 pm game.


Wednesday’s game will be the 10th and final meeting between the Devils and Sound Tigers this year. Albany has points in six of nine games, going 4-3-0-2 against Bridgeport. Paul Thompson is the series’ leading scorer with 13 points, including seven goals and six assists.


Albany and Worcester are set to meet in a home-and-home series, starting Friday at 7:30 pm at DCU Center. The teams then meet Saturday at 2 pm at Times Union Center. Entering the week, the Sharks have a one point lead on the Devils in the Eastern Conference standings.


Albany is fourth in the Northeast Division and tied for eighth in the Eastern Conference at 18-14-3-5 (44 pts.). The team, which has points in three consecutive games, is 11-6-1-3 at home and 7-8-2-2 on the road.

Over The Hill

The Albany Devils 2-1 overtime victory against the Springfield Falcons last Wednesday marked the halfway point of the season. After two more games during the weekend, the Devils have 36 games remaining on their schedule.

One constant this season has been the strength of the Northeast Division. We’ve featured it several times on and rightfully so — it’s one of just two divisions that each team has a winning percentage above .500.

Here is a look at where the Devils fall in the Eastern Conference standings:

Eastern Conference Rank

26-10-3-2 (57 pts.)
26-11-4-0 (56 pts.)
 21-13-4-1 (47 pts.)
24-11-5-0 (53 pts.)
22-12-3-2 (49 pts.)
 22-16-3-0 (47 pts.)
20-14-3-2 (45 pts.)
 18-14-3-5 (44 pts.)

20-17-1-3 (44 pts.)
19-16-5-1 (44 pts.)

Red: Northeast Division
Blue: Non-Northeast Division


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