The Devils have had some roster issues over the last few weeks, especially in net. But tonight they will be getting some reinforcements back to their ranks that should help them out a little.
According to Sam Kasan on the team’s official blog, four players are back off of the COVID protocol list and they will elevate one from the taxi squad.
Kasan reports that all of the five players in total will be available tonight.
He said that forwards Nate Bastian, Andreas Johnsson, Yegor Sharangovich and Pavel Zacha have come off the COVID list.
Under this season’s COVID protocol rules, players that are asymptomatic will only spend a maximum of five days on the COVID protocol list.
Kasan said that Sharangovich and Zacha missed three games while Johnsson was out two and Bastian only missed one.
In addition to those roster moves, defenseman Colton White was moved “from the taxi squad to the main roster” and will be available for tonight’s game as well.
In addition to all of that, Kasan noted in a separate post that the Devils have addressed their goaltending situation (for the moment).
Instead of the assumption that the Devils would recall Mareks Mitens from Utica of the AHL, they have gone a totally different route.
New Jersey signed goalie Kyle Shapiro to an amateur tryout (ATO) contract and he will be the Devils’ emergency backup goalie for tonight’s game.
Kasan gave some background on Shapiro, 28 years-old, is currently an assistant coach with the North American Hockey League (NAHL) team the New Jersey Titans, a lower-tier junior club based in Middletown, New Jersey.
Shapiro, who does serve as the Devils’ usual emergency backup goalie, is a native of Ocean, New Jersey and played three seasons of college hockey at the University of Southern Maine and one season at New England College – both of which are NCAA Division III.
Jon Gillies will get the start tonight, his second start as a Devil, with Mackenzie Blackwood – who tested positive for COVID yesterday – and Akira Schmid (who is in COVID protocol as well) both out.