Now that’s just what the doctor ordered. The New Jersey Devils are getting their star back in the lineup. Jack Hughes participated in regular line drills this morning ahead of the Devils’ tilt against the Calgary Flames. He then confirmed his own status after practice.
“I’m excited to be back out there,” Hughes stated in the locker room.
Hughes has been absent from the last 11 games with an upper-body injury. He’s scored 15 goals and 45 points in 32 games this season. The Devils are undoubtedly receiving a boost in the lineup.
“Getting (Jack) back in gives us all the tools up front that we need to keep pressing forward,” head coach Lindy Ruff said.
This morning, Ruff placed Hughes on the third line between Tyler Toffoli and Alexander Holtz. Typically, morning drills are indicative of the lineup later in the night.
However, Ruff pumped the breaks on reading this morning’s lineup.
“That definitely might not be a line. It’s something we put together. We’ve got some thoughts on lines too. For this morning, we let them skate together.”
It sounds like we’ll need to wait for warmups to find out if Holtz is, in fact, being promoted.
Devils Pre-Game Workflow
Ondrej Palat – Nico Hischier – Jesper Bratt
Timo Meier – Erik Haula – Dawson Mercer
Tyler Toffoli – Jack Hughes – Alexander Holtz
Curtis Lazar – Tomas Nosek – Nathan Bastian
Max Willman – Chris Tierney
Kevin Bahl – Simon Nemec
Luke Hughes – John Marino
Santeri Hatakka – Colin Miller
Vitek Vanecek (projected starter)
PP1: Jack Hughes, Nico Hischier, Jesper Bratt, Tyler Toffoli, and Luke Hughes
PP2: Simon Nemec, Erik Haula, Timo Meier, Dawson Mercer, and Alexander Holtz
Former Devil Yegor Sharangovich lines up on the other side of the ice for the first time at the Prudential Center. The Devils traded Sharangovich (along with a draft pick) to the Flames in exchange for current Devils forward Tyler Toffoli.
Sharangovich is enjoying a rebound season with 20 goals, tied with Blake Coleman as Calgary’s leading goal scorer. The trade is seemingly working out for both teams as Toffoli is the Devils’ leading goal scorer netting 21 so far this season.
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