Leafs try to avoid record skid in Jersey

(SportsNetwork.com) - The free-falling Toronto Maple Leafs will try to avoid setting a new club record for consecutive losses on Friday night when they visit the New Jersey Devils.

The Leafs have gone 0-9-1 over their past 10 games, matching the worst stretch of futility first set by the franchise from Jan. 15-Feb. 8, 1967. Toronto did go on to win its most recent Stanley Cup championship that season, but that likely won't happen this season with the squad 13 points out of a playoff spot.

The Devils are 4-0-1 in their past five, but sit only a point ahead of the Leafs.

Toronto had an up-and-down showing in Tuesday's 4-3 road loss to the Nashville Predators. The Maple Leafs trailed 2-0 after the first period, but pulled even on Daniel Winnik's second-period tally that preceded Nazem Kadri scoring 2:19 into the third frame.

Mike Santorelli, who had an assist on Winnik's tally, then put Toronto ahead 37 seconds later on his 10th goal of the season, but Nashville scored twice later in the frame to pull back in front.

"I think that in the first period we turned the puck over too many times," Maple Leafs head coach Peter Horachek said. "We were undisciplined with that part of the game, and that hurt us."

Jonathan Bernier took the loss, giving up all four goals on 28 shots faced over 53 minutes and 29 seconds of action. He left the game for a span of 5:24 bridging the second and third frames after he was cut on his leg while making a save on a breakaway.

James Reimer stopped all four shots he faced when in the game.

Toronto has not won since Jan. 9 versus Columbus and also has dropped 10 in a row on the road, having not picked up a victory as the visiting team since Dec. 31 at Boston.

The Leafs will host the Edmonton Oilers on Saturday, so it is unknown if Bernier or Reimer will start tonight. The former is 2-2-1 in five career starts versus the Devils with a 2.13 goals against average and .917 save percentage, while Reimer is 4-2-2 with a 2.35 GAA and .927 save percentage in eight meetings.

The Devils wrap a five-game homestand tonight on their longest point streak of the season. They picked up a second straight victory with Tuesday's 2-1 win over the Ottawa Senators.

Adam Henrique and Mike Cammalleri scored in the win, while Cory Schneider posted 19 saves in his career-high 44th start of the season.

Schneider did catch a break as Ottawa forward Bobby Ryan, a native of Cherry Hill, New Jersey, had an open net in the dying seconds but couldn't get a shot off.

"I was just trying to flop and get something down. He's probably the last guy you want standing there with an open net," said Schneider.

Adam Henrique had the other goal for the Devils, who have earned a point in a season-high five straight games (4-0-1).

The Devils are 5-0-2 in their past seven games at home and will visit the Montreal Canadiens on Saturday.

Schneider is 3-2-0 versus the Leafs with a 1.72 GAA and .935 save percentage and is expected to start tonight.

The Devils have won three in a row over the Leafs, taking the first two of three meetings this season. They have won two in a row at home in the series.