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Game 73: Devils At Avalanche, Preview And Open Thread

This has all the potential to be a really great game.  Or, it could also be the most boring game ever played.  You never really know with the New Jersey Devils---a team Colorado almost never plays.  

The Devils are good, and currently lead the Eastern Conference by just one point over division rival Pittsburgh and Northeast Division foes Montreal and Ottawa.  All three teams are tied with 87 points.

The Avs are still in sole possession of first place in the Northwest Division, but losing today is really not an option for them.  Every other team in the division, with the exception of idle Calgary, plays tonight.  A Colorado loss and wins by Vancouver and/or Minnesota would result in yet another annoying tie for first place.  And nobody wants that.

The Devils are hot, winners of four of their last five games.  The Avs are hot, winners of eight of their last nine.  Ryan Smyth is expected to return to the lineup, and Paul Stastny, despite tweaking his groin during the Edmonton game on Thursday, is also supposedly going to play.  We'll see.

The game starts at 1:00 PM Mountain time, 3:00 PM Eastern.  I might not be around for the whole game, but I'll try to check in.  Happy threading.

ESPN preview.