The New Jersey Devils were beaten badly by the Dallas Stars on Saturday night. They honored Sergei Brylin and followed it up by really dropping the ball.
A big bounce-back performance was needed by this team on Monday night with the defending Stanley Cup champion Vegas Golden Knights in town.
If they could find a way to beat them, things might start to turn around for them with some tough games coming up. Through all of their health issues and bad goaltending, they are still very much in the race.
It didn't start well for New Jersey against Vegas. They went down 1-0 for the 32nd time in 45 games. That is an abysmal stat because they are not ready for games at the start.
The New Jersey Devils ended up having a crazy game against Vegas
Nico Hischier would eventually tie the game though and that started to get the Devils going. Eventually, a Tyler Toffoli goal gave them a 3-1 lead early in the second period.
Things started to fall apart from there. Vegas scored four unanswered goals in the second period to take a 5-3 lead.
Luckily, Tyler Toffoli scored his second of the game at 19:44 of the second period to head to intermission only down one instead of two.
About halfway through the third period, Curtis Lazar buried a shot taken by Simon Nemec, and the game was tied at five.
10 goals were scored between the two teams and it was becoming one of those "remember it forever" types of matches. That was it for scoring and overtime was reached tied at 5.
After trading a few chances in the sudden death period, Luke Hughes intercepted a Vegas breakout pass, took it the other way, and made a perfect feed to Tyler Toffoli who scored the overtime game-winning goal. The overtime hat trick was just what the team needed.
With all of the injuries and adversity that this team has faced this year, they needed a good team win like that one.
Toffoli has been getting some criticism lately. He was traded for Yegor Sharangovich who has been very hot for the Calgary Flames lately. With Sharangovich getting to 19 goals, Toffoli was sitting at 16. He scored one at the end of the Dallas game and three in this Vegas game to reach 20.
Goal scorers get hot and cold. Right now, Toffoli seems to be hot. If he can keep that going, the Devils can become a problem once again.
This team needs the All-Star break badly. A week off to refresh and get closer to being a healthy group is key to their second-half success.
They only have two more games and it starts on Thursday with a big matchup against the Carolina Hurricanes. We can only hope that they carry the momentum earned in this Vegas win.