The Devils have been appointment TV for years and years, but I lost interest this year. I watched maybe five games from start to finish. I can't blame it all on the team, although this squad was as dull as dishwater. For me, the flame is out ... but I think the pilot light is still on.
It was definitely not an easy team to watch...I still did it, but only went to a handful of games this season. I really wanted to indoctrinate my five-year-old daughter this season, but in the games I took her to, the Devils scored exactly one goal, and lost all three. The current Devils are never going to be an offensive juggernaut, so I don't kid myself from that standpoint, but sadly, my daughter (Natalie) was more into the food than the game. I'm going to try again next season...I want it to become something we can enjoy together for years (my wife isn't really that into sports).
Things have changed. Every thread has personal insults. Posters have been made into punching bags. Seems like folks take pride int ripping people no matter what they post. If I put any more on my ignore list there will be no threads to read. It is a really sad state of affairs imo.
ETA: Almost forgot this. If I were to say anything about one's young age or maturity level, I get ripped. If a younger poster says anything about my age well, that is just fine and dandy. Yes, there are double standards as well and that is really, really sad.
I say all of the following with respect:
You jumped on me and NJ4798 a while back when you were completely wrong about the reason WHY you were jumping on us. You seem like you're either very oversensitive or not always doing a good job of interpreting what's really happening in some threads, and reacting before really thinking and posting. For example, I've seen plenty of threads that do not have personal insults in them, and have reasonable back-and-forth debating.
As far as "punching bags" go, I can think of two who bring on a fair share of what happens to them unto themselves. SD posts the same stuff about Lou's MO again and again and again. MB's points always seem to turn into endless semantics arguments, where he seems to be taking a stand, only he's not really taking one. Both are very active, so it's pretty hard for everyone to ignore them completely, even though they tend to butt heads with multiple posters.
But you really have to take the state of the Devils into account as well. They've just missed the playoffs for the third time in four seasons, after a very long run of prosperity. This was an especially frustrating team to watch...a team that had a way of teasing us again and again, only to keep kicking us in the belly. There's a lot of Devils fans who simply weren't born early enough or aren't old enough to remember the bad times or the transition period into '93-'94. They've known almost nothing but success. They're having a very difficult time processing that the good times don't go on forever, and let's face it, watching teams lose doesn't tend to bring out the best in most people, especially those who've only known winning.
Let's face it, one of THE most pushbutton hot topics was Brodeur, his play, and how the goaltenders were used. This accounted for a LOT of the more heated debates, and next season, it hopefully won't be an issue anymore. Brodeur not being here should calm things down considerably. If the Devils contend for a playoff spot and get in, that will also make a world of difference...all it takes is not making the playoffs for fans to appreciate that getting it IS a big deal, and shouldn't be taken as an automatic.
Anyway, I've been here for a long time myself now, and I don't really see this de-evolution of the board...I still think it's a terrific place to come to. There's guys I definitely miss that I wish would come back (DiG and DinLA top that list). But I still enjoy myself here, especially since there's a great football community (Crash does an awesome job with the weekly threads there), and a Mets community as well. I really don't think this place is nearly as bad as you're making it out to be, and I think next season, with Brodeur no longer being a lightning rod and hopefully the team being easier on the eyes, that things will get better. Truly.