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Mackenzie Blackwood: How Difficult Can One Game Be Without Him?

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For the New Jersey Devils this season, every good performance that happens must have challenges along the way. For the Devils losing Mackenzie Blackwood is their first big challenge. It just announced earlier Thursday late-afternoon that Mackenzie Blackwood is out on Thursday’s game against the New York Islanders. He has gotten placed on the COVID protocol list, leading people to believe he has COVID. It’s a big blow for the Devils, especially after the way they started the season.

Blackwood’s First 3 Games

Starting all three games of the season played so far, Blackwood has put up stellar numbers. Blackwood is showing an impressive 1.90 GAA, and a .940 save percentage. In both games against the Boston Bruins, he has shown a lot of heart by playing in those games. Whenever it felt like the Bruins had so many significant changes to strike and add many goals to their total in those games, he would stand tall and stop almost every attempt the Bruins would make.

Against the New York Rangers, he continued his strong performance and fought very hard against a Rangers team with a very good powerplay. That powerplay, by the way, was one the Devils could not avoid getting penalties. He is perhaps the most significant key player the Devils cannot avoid losing. But now that Blackwood is out, who will play against the Islanders?

Who Will Replace Mackenzie Blackwood against the Islanders?

Seeing another goalie replacing Blackwood after the performances he’s had will be a challenging task. But that doesn’t mean that goalie Scott Wedgewood can’t have a good game at all. Wedgewood’s first game in over three years since being traded to the Arizona Coyotes is tonight’s game. Wedgewood has returned to the Devils and signed a one-year deal last October. Blackwood’s impressive, though, not being there and playing is that the Devils can have more offense in these games that he is out instead of relying on their goaltenders to do most of the work.

Just what people have seen in the last few games, the offense has a lot of speed, and they do get goals. In the game against the Rangers, we know how the offense never got a chance in the late 1st and 3rd periods. Would this mean the shoulders rest on the offense for one game, or will the Devils need to count on Wedgewood the whole night again? We shall see very soon to see if this is a massive test for the Devils due to the past and hope that Blackwood returns quickly.

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I write articles about the New Jersey Devils.