Another Devils Defenceman Out Weeks

The New Jersey Devils get more bad news on their defence as they lose another regular at a time they need to start turning things back around. Ryan Graves is now week-to-week with a lower-body injury in the midst of a 2-7-1 run over the past 10 games.

After an extremely hot start, the Devils have now dropped to second in their division behind the streaking Carolina Hurricanes and are in danger of getting passed by the Pittsburgh Penguins, Washington Capitals, New York Rangers, and New York Islanders who are all within four points.

The Devils are still playing well in games, but need to start getting some more key saves. With Graves, someone who is a strong defender, out of the lineup, it makes it tougher for the team to reduce chances. He joins John Marino on the injured reserve and it forces the Devils to insert Kevin Bahl and Nikita Okhotiuk into the lineup. Both are 22 years old and have a combined 40 NHL games of experience.

Graves has three goals, nine points, and is a +18 in 33 games this season. He also has 53 blocks and 42 hits. The Devils lose a good penalty killer and defensive presence.

This will be a test for a team that was seemingly secured in a playoff spot after winning 13 games in a row and 19 of 21 from mid-October to the end of November.

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