After beginning last season 0-5-2 at home, the Devils beat the Carolina Hurricanes at home on Monday, 4-2, to assure that last year's start would not be replicated.
New Jersey forwards Rod Pelley and Cam Janssen will make their season debuts against Los Angeles and replace Adam Henrique and Eric Boulton alongside Brad Mills on the fourth line. Devils coach Pete Deboer discussed the revamped line with Colin Stephenson of the New Jersey Star-Ledger.
"I think the thing we're looking for consistently every night is energy, defensive reliability and for me, the ability to grab momentum back for us at different parts of the game -- or keep the momentum,'' DeBoer said. "And those guys -- hey, anybody that plays long enough eventually finds themselves in one of those roles. It's not an easy role to play, especially when you're not getting big minutes. But we have the luxury here, of some extra forwards, and we got the chance to throw a couple guys in that are chomping at the bit, so to speak, to get in there, and that's a tool we'll use.''
Janssen, an enforcer, will suit up for the Devils for the first time since being traded away from the team to the St. Louis Blues in 2008. After spending the first two seasons of his NHL career with New Jersey, Janssen is happy to return.
"I'm very, very excited,'' Janssen said of the prospect of playing his first regular season game for the Devils since he was traded away to the St. Louis Blues in February of 2008. "I came in here a couple of years ago and played, with the Blues, and saw the atmosphere and saw my old teammates and stuff -- it's just great to be back here and be able to play in this arena. I'm just very, very excited.''
The Kings began their season in Europe and enter the bout with a 1-1-0 record after falling to Buffalo 4-2 on Saturday.