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Devils Midseason Report Card: Team in midst of misery

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http://www.nj.com/devils/index.ssf/2011/01/devils_midseason_report_card_t.html

WHO SHOULD TAKE THE BLAME

Owner Jeff Vanderbeek and GM Lou Lamoriello insist it was a mutual decision to sign Ilya Kovalchuk to a 15-year, $100 million contract. If so, they both made the wrong decision rather than insuring that Zach Parise signed a multi-year extension. But Lamoriello should shoulder most of the blame for the team’s demise. His free-agent decisions since the 2004-05 lockout have left the Devils with a team on the ice lacking any chemistry and a roster paralyzed by the salary cap. Kovalchuk, in turn, hasn’t provided value for the money he’s paid.

TO-DO LIST

Questions to be answered going forward:

• What does goalie Martin Brodeur, 39 in May, have left?

• Can management sign Parise for more than one year before he bolts?

• Who’s the next coach? And why wait until the offseason?

• Is Lou Lamoriello’s job safe?

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Another "It's All Kovy's fault" piece from Chere, who was cheerleading this summer about how great it is to sign him to such a low cap hit.

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Another "It's All Kovy's fault" piece from Chere, who was cheerleading this summer about how great it is to sign him to such a low cap hit.

We needed to shore up our defense instead we spend an additional $6.6 million on another LW. We now have $16+ million invested between three LWs and don't have quality defensemen to get them the puck.

It was a bad move.

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We needed to shore up our defense instead we spend an additional $6.6 million on another LW. We now have $16+ million invested between three LWs and don't have quality defensemen to get them the puck.

It was a bad move.

You just hate Kovy.

Also, we did get 2 defenseman. We got what was the leader is blocked shots and another who was touted as being a "steady" defenseman. They are both underperforming this year and if they lived up to expectations, our defense would be running a little better.

Also, what defender this year would you have liked us to get? It was pretty slim pickings from what I remember. Also, Paul Martin is not exactly lighting them up and we did fine last year when he was sidelined for most of the season.

This season there is not 1 glaring issue, but a series of sizeable issues that came together like a perfect sh!t-storm.

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Thread prediction: Kovalchuk is so bad that his apologists will be reduced to talking about how great his cap hit is.

Other sentiments we are likely to see:

"Get him some linemates, Lou."

"He's got 14 years left to get better."

"Any GM would be happy to have Kovy."

:yucky:

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Thread prediction: Kovalchuk is so bad that his apologists will be reduced to talking about how great his cap hit is.

Other sentiments we are likely to see:

"Get him some linemates, Lou."

"He's got 14 years left to get better."

"Any GM would be happy to have Kovy."

:yucky:

Kovy has def not lived up to expectations and it is hurting the team. But so are every other forward other than Elias has been underperforming as well as the defense, goaltending, coaching, front office, mascot, food vendors, devils dancers, etc... To blame it all on one player is silly, but they each contribute to the disaster that is this season.

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Thread prediction: Kovalchuk is so bad that his apologists will be reduced to talking about how great his cap hit is.

Other sentiments we are likely to see:

"Get him some linemates, Lou."

"He's got 14 years left to get better."

"Any GM would be happy to have Kovy."

:yucky:

Great list Jerry, but you forgot:

"Kovy just needs a center and some NHL caliber defensemen to make him successful"

"We lost again 6-1, but at least Kovy scored".

"Flyer and Ranger fans all love this signing".

"In 10 years NHL teams will fear us".

"Look how much I save not having to buy playoff tickets for the next decade!"

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You just hate Kovy.

Also, we did get 2 defenseman. We got what was the leader is blocked shots and another who was touted as being a "steady" defenseman. They are both underperforming this year and if they lived up to expectations, our defense would be running a little better.

Also, what defender this year would you have liked us to get? It was pretty slim pickings from what I remember. Also, Paul Martin is not exactly lighting them up and we did fine last year when he was sidelined for most of the season.

This season there is not 1 glaring issue, but a series of sizeable issues that came together like a perfect sh!t-storm.

Truer words have never been spoken...errr...typed

Manta you hate Kovy and you love that he is not playing well this year. You walk around here with your "I told you so!" attitude and it annoys alot of people

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I'm fairly sure Manta would be more than willing to eat crow on this one. Sorry if I'm talking out of school, Manta.

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To blame it all on one player is silly, but they each contribute to the disaster that is this season.

No, it couldn't possibly be all his fault.

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This season there is not 1 glaring issue, but a series of sizeable issues that came together like a perfect sh!t-storm.

This.

To blame everything on Kovy -- or, if you'd prefer, the decision to sign Kovy -- is to ignore the path this franchise has been going down since the lockout, possibly even before then. For example, the farm system has sucked for a full decade now; it's kinda hard to have a winning attitude on the major league level when the GM refuses to instill a winning attitude in the minors.

Besides, who's to say that we'd be any better off without Kovy? I hate to throw MacLean under the bus, but if the various things we're hearing about his ineptitude as a coach are true, he's more responsible for the bottom falling out of this team than Kovalchuk is.

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I'm fairly sure Manta would be more than willing to eat crow on this one. Sorry if I'm talking out of school, Manta.

Your dead on Jerry.

Unfortunately, this is exactly what I expected would happen. I would have loved to have been wrong.

I HATE losing, and find it very frustrating to watch what the franchise has become in the last year.

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You're dead on Jerry.

Unfortunately, this is exactly what I expected would happen. I would have loved to have been wrong.

I HATE losing, and find it very frustrating to watch what the franchise has become in the last year.

Fixed.

I think the point is, Manta, is that people get kind of tired by your lamenting about the same thing. I'm sure many on this forum have second guessed the wisdom of the Kovy deal but they don't retread over it. It seems like every post you have has to have a dig at the Kovalchuk signing. Bottom line, Manta, we signed Kovy, he's here whether you like it or not, now be a Devils fan and contribute to the discussion instead of b&tching about Kovy this and Kovy that.

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To blame everything on Kovy -- or, if you'd prefer, the decision to sign Kovy -- is to ignore the path this franchise has been going down since the lockout, possibly even before then. For example, the farm system has sucked for a full decade now; it's kinda hard to have a winning attitude on the major league level when the GM refuses to instill a winning attitude in the minors.

Besides, who's to say that we'd be any better off without Kovy? I hate to throw MacLean under the bus, but if the various things we're hearing about his ineptitude as a coach are true, he's more responsible for the bottom falling out of this team than Kovalchuk is.

Respectfully disagree. We had a great team last year that could have won it all in my opinion, until JL lost control and JVBK decided to try to entice the Nets Russian owner to buy the Devils by getting Kovy.

First 41 games last year we had 62 points a league high.

First 41 games this year we have a franchise/league low 24 points.

Its not "one guy" its the chain of events and acquisitions/cap issues as a result of the "one guy".

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Fixed.

I think the point is, Manta, is that people get kind of tired by your lamenting about the same thing. I'm sure many on this forum have second guessed the wisdom of the Kovy deal but they don't retread over it. It seems like every post you have has to have a dig at the Kovalchuk signing. Bottom line, Manta, we signed Kovy, he's here whether you like it or not, now be a Devils fan and contribute to the discussion instead of b&tching about Kovy this and Kovy that.

With how many people and over how many threads can Manta carry on this same exact conversation?

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Fixed.

I think the point is, Manta, is that people get kind of tired by your lamenting about the same thing. I'm sure many on this forum have second guessed the wisdom of the Kovy deal but they don't retread over it. It seems like every post you have has to have a dig at the Kovalchuk signing. Bottom line, Manta, we signed Kovy, he's here whether you like it or not, now be a Devils fan and contribute to the discussion instead of b&tching about Kovy this and Kovy that.

True enough.

With how many people and over how many threads can Manta carry on this same exact conversation?

As long as the apologists keep on making the same misstatements I guess.

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Respectfully disagree. We had a great team last year that could have won it all in my opinion, until JL lost control and JVBK decided to try to entice the Nets Russian owner to buy the Devils by getting Kovy.

First 41 games last year we had 62 points a league high.

First 41 games this year we have a franchise/league low 24 points.

Its not "one guy" its the chain of events and acquisitions/cap issues as a result of the "one guy".

Funny thing that you never like to mention is that we had already hit a skid almost a month before we traded for Kovalchuk. Whatever had gone wrong that resulted in JL losing control had nothing to do with Ilya and everything to do with the rest of the roster before he'd even got there. If you want to say that the summer's circus exacerbated things, I'll agree with that, but I can't see pinning what was very obviously a flawed locker room on a guy who got there after it had already started melting down.

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Respectfully disagree. We had a great team last year that could have won it all in my opinion, until JL lost control and JVBK decided to try to entice the Nets Russian owner to buy the Devils by getting Kovy.

First 41 games last year we had 62 points a league high.

First 41 games this year we have a franchise/league low 24 points.

Its not "one guy" its the chain of events and acquisitions/cap issues as a result of the "one guy".

Our team last year sank into at best mediocrity in the 2nd half and went into the playoffs with no momentum. The Devils were already mired in a rough patch a good month before Kovy came in, and from what I remember Lou said that is the reason why he pulled the trigger on the Kovy deal in the first place.

Also, to believe an unconfirmed report that has been dismissed as being false is silly as well and left up to the conspiracy theorists. Yeah I know many times Lou and the Devils say one thing and then do the opposite, but as far as we know that is false and pretty far-fetched as well.

Edit: Looks like NewarkDevil beat me to the punch in what I said in my first paragraph here lol.

Edited by DevsMan84

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You know, Manta, even you can see an upside to the whole Kovalchuk deal and 2010-2011 season. All the hidden problems and small cracks finally came to a head. Everything has been exposed and laid bear. Now, at least, LL can see clearly what needs to be taken care of. Almost all teams go through this boom and bust cycle.

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Funny thing that you never like to mention is that we had already hit a skid almost a month before we traded for Kovalchuk. Whatever had gone wrong that resulted in JL losing control had nothing to do with Ilya and everything to do with the rest of the roster before he'd even got there. If you want to say that the summer's circus exacerbated things, I'll agree with that, but I can't see pinning what was very obviously a flawed locker room on a guy who got there after it had already started melting down.

See portion about JL losing team and causing "skid".

From my standpoint the Kovy acquisition had more to do with JVBK trying to sell the team to the Nets Russian owner than to improving the Devils.

Edited by MantaRay

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Almost all teams go through this boom and bust cycle.

One of the things I admire most about LL is that we don't go through the "Boom & Bust cycle". We were better than that.

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What would be refreshing is Kovalchuk becoming one of the reasons why the Devils win instead of one of the reasons why they don't.

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What would be refreshing is Kovalchuk becoming one of the reasons why the Devils win instead of one of the reasons why they don't.

I think he still can. He just needs to adjust his game. He has the skill set to do it, but he needs to add a few new tricks to his game plan. He's too predictable.

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What would be refreshing is Kovalchuk becoming one of the reasons why the Devils win instead of one of the reasons why they don't.

I can recall two games we've won this season because of Kovy.

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See portion about JL losing team and causing "skid".

From my standpoint the Kovy acquisition had more to do with JVBK trying to sell the team to the Nets Russian owner than to improving the Devils.

Is there any PROOF that VBK was trying to sell the team to him? Or just internet rumors?

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