That would be the extremely easy option and ruin the thread.
I'm a Marty loyalist. I stood by him when everyone was calling for Moose to start Game four in the first round. Marty is the Devils, he is New Jersey. He gets all of our paradoxes with the Rangers and such. Pay him what he wants. FFS, he's one of the reasons the team is still playing in NJ let alone a state of the art arena.
I was rooting very hard for the Caps at the start of the series, but seeing the way these guys pin balled Philly, I have no doubts they can do it to whoever they play. Just rooting for the series to go 7 games and let the winner win in the 11th OT.
Chico had pointed it out yesterday at multiple times yesterday, talking about how Ilya Kovalchuk has never played any better than he is right now. It really got me thinking. The light originally went on in my head back when he scored shorthanded on a breakaway at Winnipeg. Playing on the kill, waiting for the right time to go and steal the puck is pretty much what was the polar opposite we had expected when we traded for him. Now, plays like that are a huge reason this team is having the season they are having.
I don't know how the advanced stats look, but clearly to the naked eye he's doing the little things at the right times. His positioning has been putting him in much better positions to make plays and he has turned into somewhat of a distributor. Think of the times when he gains the zone before coming to a stop and just waiting to feed a cutter. Or the Rangers game this week where with three minutes to go on two 2-on-1's he sends the pass across rather than take the shot (regardless if it might have been a better idea to shoot). He's fully buying into the team concept. A lot has to be said about Debow getting him to buy in, and it evens extends from Lemaire, part II.
Kovalchuk has a ton of haters, for reasons I will never understand but you cannot deny the way he has been playing lately.