I want Stevens gone. The idiotic decisions on defense have really started with his coming aboard. Why was Tallinder sat so much last year and Volchenkov used so much last year? (I exempt Salvador because he's captain). Why is Eric Gelinas throwing hits ever? Who is telling him to do that and why? We heard a comment from Gelinas or someone via Gulitti that they wanted Gelinas to be more physical. He's not a physical player. He definitely needs to be more physical in front of the net - without question, that's where he needs to take the man more often. But I see him throwing hits along the boards or in spots where a hit is totally unneeded. Why? Whatever coach taught him to do this, or couldn't get him to stop doing it, should be out of the NJ organization. He's not Anton Volchenkov. And even Volchenkov is too often unsuccessful on his hit attempts.
I could not agree more with this post. Stevens can be brought in to do motivational speeches once a year. Other than that I have never had any faith in him as a coach, I shook my head when they gave him his current role, and by now I just have a headache. It's like the Devils have forgotten how to let players be themselves and develop their talents. Every young D-man has to be a Stevens or he's out (a la Larsson) and if you're an offensive-minded forward, you have no place on the Devils.
Ultimately, NJ made the biggest mistakes teams make coming back from championship or near-championship runs - thinking that everyone who had the magic for those awesome two months has the magic permanently. So we're treated to Salvador and Gionta and Bernier and Zubrus and Brodeur.
QFT. This was the epitome of Lou's status quo. We all knew it going in to last year: our team couldn't do what they did again, no way. And we made absolutely no upgrades, ZERRRRROOOOO, and on top of that lost Zach Parise.
Also, now that I'm frustrated, in hindsight I have to scream, WHAT THE fvck DID WE DO TO ZHARKOV?