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#1071760 GDT: 12/10/11 Canadiens vs Devils

Posted by DevilinLA on 11 December 2011 - 03:43 AM

Whether anyone wants to admit it or not Kovalchuk is the problem. Wait, before you say anything let's take a trip down memory lane.

1) Absolute disappointment so far. Sure he turned it on last year, but "almost singlehandedly getting the Devils to the post season" is still ALMOST. For the money he makes... We should've been there. Hey, he got the coin what has he really done?

2) His money has and will effect the team for years to come. Who are Devils going to get with all that money tied up with this guy? I think by the reactions of Parise and Brodeur, they're both DONE with this team and organization. I guess we'll see, but who and what are the Devils going to be able to get? IF they resign Parise, what else can they afford? So many issues are in need of addressing (RW, C, D, Goal)... I guess LW is okay... but there are a LOT of needs so what can you get for the money left.

3) Probably the only thing that isn't Kovalchuk's fault...I don't see a TEAM out there. I see individuals with the same j3ersey on in general. Sure some guys 'click', but not consistently. If you don't agree with me on anything else, you should at least see this. Not one solid game. Too many revolving 4th liners who don't get into the flow because they don't see ice time to contribute, and are thrown in for a few games here and there.

As per anyone coming to the Devils games... I think whoever plants their arse in a seat is welcome at a game. Regardless of the team they support, they are PAYING the Devils to watch a game. The money they spend goes to the Devils and given the state of the organization, I think every single person who pays counts. Would I want to see a bunch of Pens or Rags fans there, not really, but if helps the team... who am I to argue. At least it isn't a ghost town like Atlanta was last season even after they had section with all you could eat food!

Sorry, I strongly disagree.

This team has had construction problems since 2005.

Management was not prepared for a post-lockout world. Sure it was easy with 2.5 HOF Blue-liners on the defense.

The departure of Neids, Rafalski, Martin, and even Gomez changed the identity of this team.

The pre-kovalchuk years were about redifining that identity. I think LL realized the team needed a new identity by hiring Sutter, but slowly realized that this new post-lockout world didn't allow him to keep pace with the new NHL that relies on strong transition game , depth up the middle, and multidimensional blueline players. The era of 1-0 hockey was coming to a close. I don't think that LL was prepared to sacrifice the time it would take to truly adapt to an aggressive Sutter forecheck system - he wasn't willing to lose to learn. Hence - the diluting of that system as the season went on.

The role for aging lunchpail players like Pando, Madden, Brylin (as in too many of these guys) on contender teams was replaced by the need for youth, hunger, and determination (i.e. Zetterberg's, Malkin's, Toews's, Getzlaf's, etc.).

These season showed promise with the emergence of our own youth in Parise and Zajac, but still unsuccessful attempts to go back to the NJ Veteran well in underperforming players such as Rolston, Holik, Shanny, and even Pandolfo. Thankfully LL realized this before retaining players like Gio and Madden for ridiculous contracts.

The overachievement of the 08-09, 09-10 teams in the end only showed the blatant inability to play both sides of the ice through a strong transition game, PP, and a defense that could control a game. Sadly, these types of defenses - commonly built with a strong 2-way #1 Dman or two strong 1A's could only be built through a strong draft position (something NJ lacked until last year) or a risky trade (aka Pronger to PHI).

I think Lou realized that there was no real way to win with the old model, or at least that the defensive personnel were not available in the market to make it work past, at best, a stalemate position (strong regular season - but an inability to score enough or hold back a strong offense to go deep in the playoffs). The Jacques Lemaire model - works for a while but always seems to lack that certain chemistry or spark to succeed long term - the system tasks the players and requires them to play over the level of actual talent on the team.

I believe that Lou, seeing no feasible way to fix the D with top defenders through trade or UFA sought to attempt to meet the standards of the NEW NHL and outscore the opponent to give his goalie goal support - hence the Kovalchuck trade and contract.

The loss of Martin and his transition game (albeit limited) was hoped to be replaced by signing Volchenkov (the physical component), and Tallinder (a somewhat mobile defenseman). Unfortunately, these players had difficulty adjusting off the back as they were new. Both had their good stretches - by neither are leaders enough to be THE backbone of the defensive core.

There is obviously a gaping hole on the defensive - one that we all suspected might be addressed with the conspicuous White buy out and yet glaring lack of acquisition(s) to replace him - plus the unusual amount of capspace (which very well could be due to financial limitations) unusual to an NJ payroll.

Kovalchuk has NOT been the catalyst that everyone thought would give herald to a new electric NJ offense - but to simple lay FRANCHISE FAILURE at the feet of this one player and his contract is gross oversimplification of what has been developing in the evolution and transition of NJ Franchise hockey and system strategy. Lemaire HAD his chance - and was given one of the most prized tools to accomplish his goal - but his system - while somewhat effective, for whatever reason simply does not translate through 3 rounds of playoff success with THESE players in NHL 2000's - era.

Kovalchuk was a bold move and a plan to market this team as well. A genuine, electric, flashy, highlight reel, sexy-goal, scorer. Although it has not yet worked - time will tell on the deal. If you don't believe that - then tell me that the Kaberle trade was exceptional for MTL because he had 2 points today? Evaluation must be made accurately and thoroughly over time.

For the record, I don't like Kovalchuk and don't think he was the answer. However, I was HAPPY to see LL make a move in a different direction - remarkably showing an understanding for what was not working over the past 4-5 seasons.

An evolution is happening before our eyes - you can see it in Deboer's system. Whether or not these same players will be still here to execute it in a year remains to be seen. One thing is for sure - I don't see Pete Debo going anywhere anytime soon.

The only questions that truly remains are:

How long will this evolution take - and what sacrifices will both management and the paying fanbase itself be prepared to make to see it to fruition?
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#1069970 Gotta love Sherri Ross' honesty

Posted by DevilinLA on 05 December 2011 - 06:05 PM

Not that I don't think it might be time to do so...

but moreso....

I could give a fvck what any amateur-hour commentator/announcer has to say about strategy and personnel.

Coaches spend day upon day dealing with strategies for games and the ins-and-outs of motivating player personalities. I'm willing to bet that DeBoer knows more about the players he has and what needs to be done "big picture" (i.e. 82 games) than Sherri Ross.
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#1069265 GDT: Devils @ Wild. 8:00 pm EST

Posted by DevilinLA on 02 December 2011 - 10:43 PM

Somewhere Jamie Cancerbrunner is laughing at all of us as his team continues to thrive.
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#1064562 GDT: New Jersey @ Boston

Posted by DevilinLA on 16 November 2011 - 12:36 AM

Yeah, we're playing like a bunch of tossers and we can't afford to play like that. NYR, PITT and Philly are all playing well. These early points matter a whole heck of a lot. Plus teams like FLA, TOR have started to show some life. It's going to be hella tough getting a playoff spot this season.
Yeah, we did stand toe to toe with the Bruins tonight, but we let in some terrible goals due to stupid mistakes. I've watched a few games this season. Players get out of position much more than previously.
We haven't had too many 5-1, 6-1 losses this season, but we've had plenty of OT games which means we can't dominate a game and struggle just to keep pace.

Sure the points matter - no doubt.
But I'm having a tough time buying these sweeping generalizations from "watched a few games this season".

A. You have a new coach.
B. Brand New Devils (some logging major minutes and major responsibility): Larsson, Henrique, Mills, Carter
C. Still green Sophmores: Fayne, Teddy, Palmeiri
D. A star LW and top 4 D man returning from season-long injuries
E. A 19-year old rookie logging top minutes, 21 year old center logging top line/PK minutes
F. Top line center out long term, and another C out in JJ

This is a practically brand new team developing chemistry and identity less than 1/4 through the season?

What did you really expect? The Washington Capitals? Mistake-free hockey from rookies being given the keys?

This is part of rebuilding - letting new guys learn. Better to do this in Nov. than being forced into via injury in Feb. or March.

I'm not a Pollyanna like some here - but was anyone on this board really expecting us to burn through the East with this lineup straight out of the dock?

I think its a great sign that this team can fight back and force overtime (previous NJ teams have NEVER been able to generate enough fight and offence to do this). I'd prefer not to win that way EVERY night - but its a GOOD sign at this point.
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#1059873 Observations from behind the Bench

Posted by DevilinLA on 27 October 2011 - 08:02 PM

Glad you guys enjoyed this....

A few more observations and memories came back to me today:

1. LAK does a "Hero of the Game" feature (I imagine this is done in other rinks too) where the honor a military vet in the house on the jumbotron. I found it interesting that the guys ALL stopped whatever they were doing the INSTANT this happened stood up and emphatically tapped sticks against the boards. I don't if this is some sort of NJ mandate or Lou policy - but it wasn't ho-hum it was energized. Even the non-native players.

2. Zach spends much of his time on the bench with his helmet off - found that odd for some reason.

3. Of all the D, Larry seemed to give the most instruction of Fayne. Only once did he appear to yell out of concern to make the right play to the D pairs - for Fayne. Fayne got more extensive instruction off the ice by far than nay other.

4. Hedberg definitely has a "game zone" - when he plays zero smiles, laughs or communication - just focus - even during the TV time outs.. Very different than what I remember watching Marty.

5. Many of the players tap Tedenby on the helmet throughout the game and in the tunnel - as a gesture of approval - but often like a young kid. I didn't see this with anyone else. He seems to be like the little brother of the crew.

6. Henrique was the first player in the tunnel - and the 1st out after Moose each time taking the ice.

Just some more little snapshots. If I think of more I'll post - I'm still processing the night.
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#1059574 Observations from behind the Bench

Posted by DevilinLA on 26 October 2011 - 01:28 PM

:burn: FAN JOURNAL from BEHIND THE BENCH 10/25/11 NJ vs LAK :burn:

As most of you probably know I usually sit up on the glass when NJ comes to LA.
I wanted to just take a few moments to share some interesting perspective and observations from last game. I usually sit in the 1st row, seat closest to the tunnel.
Here are a few things I noticed:

1.) L-ROB: Having done this like 4-5 times now, I have never seen Larry Robinson SO active in coaching the defense. He yelled out directions frequently, and encouraged each defensive pair each time they came off the ice. The guy must have yelled "Good fvckin' Stick" at least 30-40 times this night. As a sidenote his nicknames for the guys are: Fayner, Sally, Tally, Greener, Tank (Volch), and Adam (just Adam). HE also laughs a lot more than I have ever seen him - particularly with Larsson. He frequently patted AL on the shoulder, huddled with him, and they looked like they were having a ball together. Adam was smiling and laughing a lot as well. I heard him mutter "Kid is fvcking good" a few times only loud enough for the nearest players to hear. He also bitched out a few of the equipment managers for not having Volch and AL's fight strap tied down. He also tossed Kinkaid a stick of gum before the game started and laughed viciously. He was INTO the game (last year he was stoic) - he jumped at every near goal!

2.) D-BO: Quiet as a mouse - no smiles. HE lets Oatsbot2011 do much of the talking and encouraging to guys. Tough guy to read. The quietest NJ coach I've since in recent years.

3.) Cammer: This guy definately adds a dimension of fun and frivolity to the bench. He brings an energy and smiles that the other guys seem to feed off of. He also seemed super happy to be back in an NJ uniform and fed off the crowd encouraging him. When a fan yelled (close to him) "Cam - need to see you drop the gloves!", he responded - "Need to kill somebody" jokingly.

4.)Henrique: Looked nervous on the bench but was getting A LOT of encouragement from ALL the players - moreso than nay other player.

5.)Zach: His focus has sharpened. He would not make eye contact with any fans. In previous years he was very warm and even came out before the game to sign autos. He was fixated in a zone and did not communicate a lot with the other players.

6.)Elias: First off I saw the killed goal develop from almost exactly his perspective - it was beautiful. I can tell that the bench thought it was a pretty goal as they erupted more than any other goal. Patty was thrilled - his celebration last all the way back to the bench and beyond. This is unusual as PE is usually a bit more reserved with goals I've noticed - but he's super hot right now and engaged with the team as well.

7.)Kovy: HE definately seems to not have settled into his role yet as his facial expressions seem to be of uncertainty. I'll admit I'm speculating - but he's not the vocal leader. HE says little, but stands a lot - I sense he really wants to produce more to help but is frustrated. His responses to the coaches were short and sweet - where other players got into more conversations and head nodding.

8.)Moose: These guys love him. His nickname is Heddy. They frequently cheered for him at almost every save.

9.)Napalm: More than any other player Npalm is gripping his stick tightly. He often whines a lot at calls. He replied "Are you fvcking kidding me" after his penalty. - and when he took the penalty Zach came back to the bench and shook his head with a disappointed look. He looks most frustrated lots of frowns and explatives at his own play. I think he knows he's close to being in the doghouse and hasn't found his game yet.

10.)Greene: Looks a lot more confident, a lot more communicative with the other D men - and seems to be showing a little leadership as well. Surprising and awesome. He swears a lot when he gets off the ice.

11.)Clarkson: There is a lot of faith in Clarkie by the others. They tap his helmet a lot and cheer for his boardwork during the play. He smiles a lot on the banch and jokes around. He seems to add an element of fun to the bench that seems to help. He also gave a little girl a puck after the 1st intermission.

12.) Volchenkov: This guy just sits in silence and contemplated destroying people I think.

This group looks much different from last year when Jmac came. They react to every "near goal" (Larry jumps). The stoicism of the last crew seems to be gone - there is much more of a spirit of frivolity than in the past year (probably influenced by the success). I think the mixture of personalities and youth is helping - a lot more smiles, jokes, and having fun with what they are doing. A lot more chatter and comraderie.

Kovy's gloves go back and forth (new or warmed) via the staff at least 5-6 times per period.

When a puck came off the ice and onto the bench during the 3rd period. Zach picked it up - handed to Larry - and Larry kindly handed it to me through the glass on the corner without my having to even make a ruckus! A NICE SOUVENIR! :clap:

:evil: :evil: GREAT GAME! :evil: :evil:
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#1053986 Sykora officially signs

Posted by DevilinLA on 05 October 2011 - 12:56 PM

Things like this show class and make be proud to be a fan of this organization:

From TGfireandice Tom Gulitti:
Players tap their sticks on the ice in applause for Petr Sykora as he steps into middle of ice to lead on-ice stretching.
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#981686 Langenbrunner Just scored for Dallas

Posted by DevilinLA on 18 January 2011 - 04:26 PM

Blow-J, can you explain what the word "retard" means?.... I don't understand your usage.
I'm guessing that you disagree with my opinion on Langebrunner and I am really hoping that it isn't a personal attack, because that kind of stuff gets you suspended here.

I'm sorry, I know you're a mod, but you got a lot of balls.
You start a caustic thread calling a former Devils player a "LOWLIFE", with no other apparent content other than to bash the guy
..... and then you hide behind the hammer and chastise those who get upset and want to call you out for leading this pointless charge?
People talk about agendas here .... I mean where did you honestly expect this to go?
There's something wrong with that.

He smiled after a goal - yeah what a dick - if he didn't smile the thread would be about how he still doesn't care.

How many more times must the ignorant faction of this board pin this season on Jamie f-ing Langenbrunner?
I mean someone actually posted they WANT Lemaire back for next season! I mean, yes, he seems to have restored stability - but you did see last year's playoffs right?

Nothing says class like going out of your way to bash ex-Devil players (those who WANTED to stay - not Gomez) nightly.

I can't get over how many here can't get past this.
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#972868 Devils Make Up to Fans for 12/26's Game.

Posted by DevilinLA on 27 December 2010 - 09:03 PM

Figures, Devils organization does the right thing, makes it up to fans - three post responses here at NJDEVS.

No props or fan appreciation when they do something right.

What gives?
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#970097 PB Patch Jerseys For Auction

Posted by DevilinLA on 20 December 2010 - 06:15 PM

For once, I am thankful that I am unemployed and dont have money to piss away on things like this.

Yeah, cancer charities are such wasted $$$.
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#967775 PB Patch Jerseys For Auction

Posted by DevilinLA on 14 December 2010 - 06:15 PM

For those wo didn't see it reported here's the blurb:

Devils to wear memorial patch in honor of Pat Burns
Monday, 11.22.2010 / 4:56 PM / News
New Jersey Devils
Newark, NJ – Beginning with tonight’s game vs. the Washington Capitals at Prudential Center at 7:00 PM, the New Jersey Devils will wear memorial “PB” patches on their sweaters in memory of Pat Burns. The announcement was made today by Devils’ President/CEO/General Manager Lou Lamoriello.

Burns, who coached the Devils to the 2003 Stanley Cup Championship, and served as a member of the team’s coaching staff the past eight seasons, passed away on Friday after a courageous bout with cancer.

The 2½” diameter black patch features “PB” in white stitching and will be worn on the upper right chest for the next four home games through next Thursday, December 2. Each of the jerseys will then be autographed by the entire team and auctioned off. Further information will be made available at newjerseydevils.com.

Proceeds from the sale of the jerseys will be donated in Pat Burns’ memory to La Maison Aube-Lumiere, a cancer hospice in Sherbrooke, Que.
Devils Link
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#967771 PB Patch Jerseys For Auction

Posted by DevilinLA on 14 December 2010 - 06:10 PM

I don't see where they said they're removing the PB patch...? They kept the JM on all year in 05-06...

Its been widely reported as 4 games - all home.
Unless they change their mind.
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#967342 PB Patch Jerseys For Auction

Posted by DevilinLA on 13 December 2010 - 11:47 PM

The retro gamers continue to be another source of speculation and questions... Lou told some Devils collectors that they were given to the players, but when signing autographs the player said they didn't have them. So where are they?

Maybe Bettman took them as part of the compensation for the Kovy deal?
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#967332 PB Patch Jerseys For Auction

Posted by DevilinLA on 13 December 2010 - 11:29 PM

According to MeiGray, the Pat Burns patched red jerseys are to be auctioned off with all the money going to charity. The Devils jerseys were worn all season and then the patch was added for four games with the last one being December 2nd.

"After the jerseys have been worn in the four designated home games, each of the jerseys worn during this period will then be autographed by the entire team and auctioned off. Further information on the auction is still to come.

Proceeds from the sale of the jerseys will be donated in Pat Burns’ memory to La Maison Aube-Lumiere, a cancer hospice in Sherbrooke, Quebec, Canada."

The Devils aren't always the quickest contact all parties involved and I just wanted to find out if anything has been heard concerning these jerseys? If the Devils wanted to auction them off and get the most bang for their buck, I'm really suprised they didn't mention them at games (to bid on or inform those watching that they can own a game worn jersey with a patch to remember a fallen hero). The Devils were 3 and 1 in those jerseys and each day I feel they are going to command less and less since the Devils aren't doing as well as projected. It is a real shame that Pat Burns was only good enough to be remembered on home jerseys for FOUR games.

Has anyone heard anything period?

Odds are Matt that if you and your circle don't know - no one knows yet!
Fingers crossed ....
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#848374 Hamhuis

Posted by DevilinLA on 12 February 2010 - 03:25 PM

Stop promoting this douche.
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