What the Devil?
The New Jersey Devils’ 13-game winning streak – one short of tying a franchise record – came to an end with a 2-1 loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs on Wednesday night. But that wasn’t what had the home fans a Prudential Center the most irate.
The Devils had three goals disallowed during the contest and the crowd more than voiced their displeasure. After the third call didn’t go their way, some in attendance started throwing bottles, hats and other trash onto the ice with 11:07 left in the third period and New Jersey down 2-0.
“You take cover,” Toronto Coach Sheldon Keefe said. “It’s all you can do. I’ve been through that experience a few other times … but I felt like it could get dangerous.”
The Maple Leaf players headed to the locker room to avoid the debris reigning down from the stands and Devils Winger Erik Haula came out on the ice to ask the fans to stop.
“I don’t care if I get a beer spilled on me but I got gear on. There’s other people there and you’d hate to see somebody get knocked in the head with something,” said Haula, who added he was hit by a chicken finger.
Jonas Siegenthaler’s first-period goal for the Devils (16-4-0, 32 points) was waved off because of goalie interference as it was determined Nathan Bastian being in the crease hindered Leafs goalie Matt Murray. In the second period, Tomas Tatar being cited for knocking Murry off his skates nixed another score. The final goal was taken away in the third because it was determined Haula directed the rebound of his initial shot in with his skate at 8:53 of the third period.
Dougie Hamilton scored a goal that finally counted at 14:53 of the third but the Devils could not find the equalizer. John Tavares and Pontus Holmberg both scored for Toronto.
It all left the Devils a little short of some history.
“It’s definitely frustrating, 100 percent, but nothing we can do,” Nico Hischier said. “Refs make the call and there’s nothing that’s going to change it, so we got to stick with it…”
— With AP