I don't need to take another look at these games. Parise has been great. The Rangers are working their asses off and getting them handed to them - work doesn't matter when you're sitting in your own zone for 60% of the series like the Rangers.
I agree that Sykora has been terrible and that the 3rd line has been non-existent. The defense, Volchenkov aside, has been incredibly strong 5 on 5. Still, in that critical Game 3, Brodeur was awful, and the Devils could be ahead in this series without that. He's the single most critical player, and with the defense playing as strong as it has 5 on 5 (and I don't think the PK has been that bad - getting all sorts of bad breaks and Brodeur unable to make a single stop on it doesn't help), it sucks to be down in this series.
Game 3 was critical, but game 5 was more critical, and Brodeur showed up, and the offense didn't. The Versteeg goal was not great. It was a great shot, but I thought he had a lot of time to get in position and make a good save. But he stopped two breakaways (or semi breakaways) and three 2-on-1s. The offense was terrible and Theodore did not make one tough save all night. They had no energy all night.
The thing is...we know what Brodeur is at this point. He had a pretty bad year but the team still finished with 102 points. He hasn't been bad say for 1 game, and his stats actually say he has only improved. You can't say the same for the offense in this series. Expecting Brodeur to play any better than he has isn't likely unfortunately.
And say what you want 5-on-5, there were a ton of breakdowns last night where Brodeur bailed the team out. Put game 3 on Brodeur. Absolutely. But add in the fact how awful they were after Theodore was pulled and last night, well you have a ton of blame to go around.
Edited by devilsrule33, 22 April 2012 - 07:31 PM.