TROY, NY — With Brian Gibbons back in the mix after missing the opening weekend for the birth of his son, the Devils made some slight line adjustments ahead of Friday’s game against the Binghamton Senators.
During Wednesday’s practice at Knickerbacker Ice Arena, Gibbons was centering Blake Pietila and Joe Blandisi. Blake Coleman, who was on that line, skated with Kevin Rooney and Max Novak. Ryan Kujawinski joined Brandon Baddock and Jan Mandat.
“We’re going to give him an opportunity to play with some good players: Blandisi and Pietila,” said Head Coach Rick Kowalsky about Brian Gibbons. “We’ll use him on the power play and give him the opportunity to be a top six guy.”
• FIGHTING RULE’S IMPACT
During the offseason the AHL’s Board of Governors voted a rule leads to a suspension after an individual drops the gloves 10 times. You can read the rule here.
Andrew MacWilliam received a game misconduct during Saturday’s 5-2 win against St. John’s because he participated in two fights — that rule dates back to the 2014-15 season. Now the Devils’ alternate captain only has eight fights remaining with 74 games remaining.
However, the Devils are going to appeal and say that IceCaps forward Bobby Farnham instigated the second altercation.
“We’re going to look at trying to get one of those rescinded because of a potential instigator,” Kowalsky said. “MacWilliam definitely didn’t want to fight. Guys actually sought him out and the instigator rule actually says ‘distance traveled.’ The Farnham one, certainly; we watched it on video, he went out, went around the net.”
• NJ DEVILS WIN HOME OPENER
The New Jersey Devils defeated the Anaheim Ducks, 2-1, Tuesday in front of a sellout home opener crowd at Prudential Center for their first win of the season. It was the Devils’ first win in a home opener since beating the Flyers on Jan. 22, 2013 in the lockout-shortened season and snapped a five-game winless streak against the Ducks.