Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Kinkaid Ready for Action

Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Kinkaid Ready for Action

Article excerpt

NEWARK -- Keith Kinkaid is hoping the Blackhawks get a shot on him fairly quickly tonight.

"Preferably not a breakaway," the Devils backup goalie said.

Kinkaid will make his first start of the season as the Devils host the Blackhawks at Prudential Center, the start of a "measuring stick" back-to-back set that also includes the Lightning on Saturday to conclude this four-game homestand.

"I'm very excited I finally get some game action," said Kinkaid, who last played as he relieved Cory Schneider for the third period of the Devils' preseason finale, a 4-2 loss to the Panthers on Oct. 8 at West Point, N.Y. "After a long layoff, you want to get some shots right away and get your game and get your feet under you."

Entering Thursday, Schneider and the Blue Jackets' Sergei Bobrovsky were the lone remaining goalies in the NHL to have played every minute for their team so far.

It's no easy task that Kinkaid, 9-9-1 with a 2.81 goals-against average and a .904 save percentage last season in his first full one as the Devils' backup, is stepping into. Nor is it an easy task the Devils face this weekend.

The Blackhawks have won three Stanley Cups since 2010, including beating the Lightning in 2015.

"It is a good early test," captain Andy Greene said. "These are two teams that have made a lot of noise in the last few years. They're good skating teams, aggressive. They're skilled. There is a pride factor: You always want to show your best."

"It's definitely a measuring stick," added left wing Taylor Hall, who has five goals in his first six games with the Devils, including two, two-goal games in three home games. "It's a good test and a back-to-back at home is a unique situation. One, that if it goes well, we can keep it going."

Barring something unforeseen, Kinkaid will not be able to just keep it going as coach John Hynes said he expects Schneider to be back in net on Saturday.

At the same time, Kinkaid is not likely to have many more lengthy layoffs through November and December. …

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