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How the hell did this team make the Cup Finals


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#1 roomtemp

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 12:08 AM

So many blown leads, our star defenseman was... umm... Salvador?, a 40 year old goalie, a career AHL who only played a handful of games in the regular season comes up to help us, and our star player was clearly injured.
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#2 ghdi

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 12:09 AM

So many blown leads, our star defenseman was... umm... Salvador?, a 40 year old goalie, a career AHL who only played a handful of games in the regular season comes up to help us, and our star player was clearly injured.


They got hot at the right time. Role players came up big when it mattered. Our coaching was great. And teams like the Rags and Flyers didnt play up to their on paper potential.
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#3 Dadds

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 12:17 AM

They got hot at the right time. Role players came up big when it mattered. Our coaching was great. And teams like the Rags and Flyers didnt play up to their on paper potential.


Its funny how the Panthers seemed to be the toughest when they were supposed to be easy, and the flyers crumbled when they seemed to be the lock to win. The rags put up a good fight but I always felt more confidence in the devils against the rag-dolls than the Panthers

Edited by Dadds, 19 July 2012 - 12:19 AM.

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#4 devilsfan26

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 12:21 AM

They have also had the best record in the Eastern Conference in the past season and a half, so contrary to popular opinion, the Devils do not suck.
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#5 Devilsfan118

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 01:53 AM

The Devils weren't a bad team by any means, but it really does go to show you that it's all about which team gets hot at the right time.
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#6 Revan

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 06:30 AM

They got hot at the right time. Role players came up big when it mattered. Our coaching was great. And teams like the Rags and Flyers didnt play up to their on paper potential.

This. You had a ton of teams in this league that had strong rosters and played well all year long and it just wasn't enough: to make it to the Finals, you need a very deep team with four dangerous lines, some unlikely heroes playing the best games of their lives, you need a roster that is a real team (not just a group of co-workers) and that believes in their coach 100%, no hesitation. It's not a knock on the Devils by any means, it's just true that you need a lot of those little things to click at the right time to make it. We had to wait 9 years for that - this fact alone shows how tough it is.

With Clarkson scoring like Parise this year, Gionta coming out of nowhere and playing a big role with Carter and Bernier in the playoffs and Marty having his best offseason in a long time, we clearly had all those things. I'm afraid it won't be easy getting those guys to repeat that stuff, especially if we don't fill the Parise hole at least partially (Semin's scoring touch could really help here).
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#7 Revan

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 06:33 AM

They have also had the best record in the Eastern Conference in the past season and a half, so contrary to popular opinion, the Devils do not suck.

This, too. I can't wait til the Devs prove all the so called experts wrong again next season. It's really comical reading some writers on twitter saying they're making predictions for next year already when 1/3 of the biggest UFAs are still there, Weber, Nash and Luongo are on the move and we don't even know when the season will start. And, of course, most of them already have the Devils as the big fallers and out of the playoffs. But I should be used to that by now.

EDIT:
Sorry for post-after-post, I thought those two would get joined automatically.

Edited by Revan, 19 July 2012 - 06:36 AM.

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#8 peteyvegas

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 07:07 AM

The third and fourth line. Maybe the opponents should've matched their top lines against them instead of Zack and Kovy!! :lol:
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#9 Martyisth3b3st

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 07:55 AM

Brodeur playing like his old self; he doesn't make those 3rd period/overtime saves against Florida in game 7 we're toast. A 3-4 shot sequence in the first overtime seems to strike my memory (I was there, 3 rows from the ice on the side Henrique scored)

Flyers crapping out: they obviously didn't take us seriously, we made them pay big time

Kovalchuk stepping up. A few terrible games made noticeable from the injury, but he was the heart of this team

3rd/4th line, no question

"No name" defense making a name for themselves

It's not such a stretch -- we got hot, we had 2003-style Marty, confidence from our coach, offense from all 4 lines, and a solid core of guys who had played together for 2 years now. If we don't meet the hottest playoff team of the past decade, we win the Cup.
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#10 Legion15

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 07:59 AM

And teams like the Rags and Flyers didnt play up to their on paper potential.


The Rangers rarely play up to their on paper potential. They keep going out for these "all star" teams and despite their rants about "we're a close knit team, we love our coach, blah blah" The Rangers have rarely had a team that can seem to play well together more than a few games at a time. Eventually everyone wants the attention and wants to stand out and they forget what "team" means. They're like Pittsburgh and their "star - centered system" Built around a couple key players who are expected to do much of the work themselves to carry the team. Like Crysby and Malkin do
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#11 Eztarget

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 08:24 AM

So many blown leads, our star defenseman was... umm... Salvador?, a 40 year old goalie, a career AHL who only played a handful of games in the regular season comes up to help us, and our star player was clearly injured.


Same way the 2010 Flyers did. They just got hot. Plus the NHL has started to allow obstruction back into the game. Both your team and the Kings got away with a ton of obstruction in the playoffs. I'm not whining about it simply pointing out what I observed. The Rangers got away with a lot of it as well. Teams that ran the post lockout Cindy Crosby friendly "run and gun" systems didn't make it past the 2nd round (Flyers/Pens/etc). Look at the Caps. They played a defense first obstructive system and were one bad goal from beating the Rangers.

Edited by Eztarget, 19 July 2012 - 08:26 AM.

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#12 '7'

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 08:44 AM

Some of it was luck. We won a game 6 and game 7 in OT against Florida. The carter goal in game 5 against the Rangers also comes to mind

Lou finally got support for the bottom two lines in Bernier, Ponikarovsky, and Carter. This made the team a lot more balanced

Zajac came back

and Brodeur was good enough.
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#13 Triumph

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 08:47 AM

Same way the 2010 Flyers did. They just got hot. Plus the NHL has started to allow obstruction back into the game. Both your team and the Kings got away with a ton of obstruction in the playoffs. I'm not whining about it simply pointing out what I observed. The Rangers got away with a lot of it as well. Teams that ran the post lockout Cindy Crosby friendly "run and gun" systems didn't make it past the 2nd round (Flyers/Pens/etc). Look at the Caps. They played a defense first obstructive system and were one bad goal from beating the Rangers.


No, not the way the 2010 Flyers did, sorry. You're incorrect about that. The 2010 Flyers shot the lights out. The Devils ended up the playoffs with an 8.7% shooting percentage, lower than their S% in the regular season.

The Devils won in part by getting favorable matchups in all 3 rounds. The Panthers were the worst team in the playoffs. The Flyers were the best team the Devils beat, but they seemed to play like victory was written for them in the stars after dominating game 1 - the Devils dominated the rest of the series. Then in the ECF, the Rangers were a paper tiger - they were a .500ish team with a top goaltender that had been getting the good end of the luck stick almost all year. They were also likely fatigued from playing 14 games over the first 2 rounds. So yeah, the Devils had a fine dose of luck getting through the playoffs, but they also crushed the teams they beat pretty solidly 5 on 5.
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#14 SegaDevil

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 09:06 AM

This was the first year Brodeur was intentionally played less than 60 games with the exception of the shortened 95 season, his injury season a few years back and last year (missed postseason so it's a moot point). The first time since 1993/94.

The coaching staff and the goaltending tandem finally realized that going 100% in the regular season generally results in an early playoff exit. This year was one of the strongest goaltending tandems the Devils have ever assembled.
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#15 Devils Pride 26

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 10:32 AM

Ryan Carter: 5 goals, 7 points
Stephen Gionta: 3 goals, 7 points
Steve Bernier: 2 goals, 7 points
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#16 Daniel

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 10:47 AM

The Devils won in part by getting favorable matchups in all 3 rounds.


Who wouldn't have been a favorable matchup? Pittsburgh, and maybe Boston, but that's about it.
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#17 Devils Pride 26

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 10:53 AM

Who wouldn't have been a favorable matchup? Pittsburgh, and maybe Boston, but that's about it.

Well as matteau32 would tell us, the Devils have no shot to adapt to rangers hockey, they are too good.
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#18 Triumph

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 11:03 AM

Who wouldn't have been a favorable matchup? Pittsburgh, and maybe Boston, but that's about it.


Yes, both of these. It's not often you miss on playing the 2 best teams in the Conference, but the Devils managed to do it. I mean, in 2003, the Devils didn't have to play the Flyers, and they got a weak Stanley Cup Finals matchup. A lot of times, it's about the teams you don't play.
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#19 Satans Hockey

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 11:04 AM

Why all these long answers? It's quite simple really. We beat Florida in Round 1 in 7 games. Philly in Round 2 in 5 games. New York Rangers in Round 3 in 6 games. That's how me made the Finals! :whistling:
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#20 Daniel

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Posted 19 July 2012 - 11:18 AM

Yes, both of these. It's not often you miss on playing the 2 best teams in the Conference, but the Devils managed to do it. I mean, in 2003, the Devils didn't have to play the Flyers, and they got a weak Stanley Cup Finals matchup. A lot of times, it's about the teams you don't play.


Ottawa in 2003 was a very good team. But otherwise the Devils had good match-ups BECAUSE they were a very good team themselves.

To quote Chris Russo: "You gotta give 'em credit Mikey".
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