Dec 26: The Devils got some good news and bad news on the COVID front as they returned from the holiday break. The team announced that winger Tomas Tatar and goaltender Jon Gillies have been placed in protocols but they were able to activate centers Nico Hischier and Jesper Boqvist plus defensemen Ryan Graves, P.K. Subban, and Christian Jaros from the COVID list. Tatar and Gillies will be out for the next ten days.
Tatar is in his first season with New Jersey after signing a two-year deal with them in the offseason and is off to a quiet start offensively with just six goals in 30 games although his possession stats are once again well above the league average which was also the case when he played with Montreal previously. Meanwhile, Gillies was just acquired from St. Louis to give them another option between the pipes with both Mackenzie Blackwood and Jonathan Bernier injured. Fortunately for the Devils, Blackwood has returned to practice and should be ready to play soon.
As for those returning, Hischier sits second on the Devils in assists with 13 in 25 games although his three goals are underwhelming for the 2017 first-overall pick. Boqvist has been up and down with the team this season and has suited up in eight NHL contests so far. They’ll get a nice boost on their back end with the returns of Graves and Subban who sit third and fifth respectively in ATOI among New Jersey blueliners while Jaros has had a very limited reserve role.
New Jersey is set to play against Buffalo on Wednesday in their first game back from the break barring any further changes or postponements.