Devils Defeat Capitals 5-4: What does this mean for the rest of the preseason?


Devils victorious over Capitals 5-4 Credits- Geoff Burke USA TODAY Sports

On Wednesday, September 29, the New Jersey Devils found themselves victorious against the Washington Capitals with a score of 5-4. With both teams providing a strong fight towards each play, Washington quickly fell after Captain Nico Hischier scored in the third period.


During the beginning period, the Devils curated a much stronger push towards play, with Devil Yegor Sharangovich firing a backhand shot past the Capitals goaltender Fucale. In a series of close encounters of each team scoring, Washington fired back with a short-handed goal from Carlson. 


As the second period began, the thriving energy of the Devils showcased with another backhanded goal by Jack Hughes. Following the steps of the past period, Carlson, only a few minutes after, shot a Power Play slap shot past the Devils net. Soon after, Alexander Holtz fired back with a snapshot. However, two more Capitals goals rang through the stadium in D.C, with Oshie and Vecchione making way through the net.


With the score at 4-3, the Devils returned for the third period prepared to push past the scoreboard of the Capitals, with Mercer soon performing a wrist shot against Washington early into the third. With several more minutes of fast paced, neck-to-neck skating, Hischier closed up the game with a Power Play Goal inside the opposing net, sealing the Devils with a 5-4 victory.


 After regulation passed, both teams agreed towards a practice session of a shootout, to which Holtz of the Devils earned another goal: however it is not counted as the session was only a mutually agreed practice. 


Despite the rocky past season, the young core of the Devils have overcome many drastic changes regarding roster, leadership positions, and coaching. From the sudden trade of Devils veterans Kyle Palmieri and Travis Zajac last season, the team found themselves enduring a drastic change of leadership within the group. As Zajac recently retired from professional hockey as a Devil, most of the team has had to juggle positions of influence for the much younger players.


During the game, both 2019 first pick Jack Hughes and Damon Severson wore the A, shocking a wide audience as the young Hughes at only 20 has worn the patch. After former captain Andy Greene was traded to the New York Islanders, the unknown of who would be captain and alternate arose. In February of 2021, Hischier was named the 12th captain in NJ Devils history, alongside being the current youngest captain in the entire league at 22.


After an exciting and hopeful season, the Devils have already begun to prove that they are a team ready to grow and make changes. Following a downpour of excitement from Luke Hughes being drafted at 4th pick, the offseason has let the team grow into a team nobody in the league will ever expect. With the first season game being held on October 15th against the Blackhawks, all of New Jersey can wait for is a hopeful season which will bring the team closer to the Stanley Cup.