With the official elimination of the Devils, I know there are a lot of negative feelings around this place. While this season was an obvious disappointment, there are many things which make me feel confident the Devils are going to be fine next year and in the future. (this excludes the obvious entertainment aspect hockey provides)
1) Pete Deboer's system works- I know detractors will say, "But SMantzas, the Devils were a bottom 10 team and we couldn't score a goal!" Although all this is true, the coach is responsible for getting his team ready to play. I can't think of more than a couple of games where NJ didn't give a good and honest effort. Furthermore, the Devils significantly outshot and outchanced their opponents. Deboer can't score goals for the team, but he can (and did) put forth a system that gives them a chance to win more often than not.
2) Top ten draft pick coming our way- If there wasn't a season, NJ would likely be picking later than 20. The Devils should be getting their first blue chip offensive prospect since Zajac/Parise. The second round should give us a chance to pick up another offensive guy with first round talent (seeing as it's an insanely deep draft). I earnestly believe the Devils don't deserve a guy like Shinkaruk, Lindholm, Monahan, etc. over teams like the Leafs, Jackets or Stars. However, I'll take it.
3) The acquisition of Andrei Loktionov- Without a season, there is no way the Devils make the trade that brought Lokti to NJ. He has obvious NHL talent and looks to have chemistry with Kovalchuk. Seeing how we haven't found a center to play with Ilya, I'd say this is a big deal. He'll do extremely well playing weak minutes, while Zajac and Josefson will take on the toughs.
4) Exploitation of Bryce Salvador and Anton Volchenkov- I'm not going to sugarcoat this; these guys are terrible. Whether or not the Devils choose to act on this fact is a different issue, but at least it's impossible not to recognize what a trainwreck these two are. I get they both play the PK and are kept around for various reasons. It'd just be nice to see our D without one of #24 or #28.
5) The visible improvement of Adam Larsson- I know he isn't a high scoring, Norris caliber defenseman yet, but he has been really good in his second season. He has played against top competition, provided solid defense and has demonstrated flashes of his offensive abilities. I suspect they take the training wheels off next season and we'll really see what we have in him. If he gets a step faster and works on his release, watch out.
I get that this season was largely painful to watch and I know things seem grim now, but the Devils will be fine if Brodeur plays a bit better, they get a capable backup and they stay relatively healthy. They are a top puck possession team and have a really good defense. The puck will start going in next year, especially if they get a top six scorer this offseason. The Devils have given us a lot of joy, so I think it's only fair to give Lou and co. a shot
Well I'm surprised but in the end this team went out the way it should have..
Like a bunch of losers who didn't deserve to make the playoffs.
So much for last year.
What a fluke.
Rangers still own us.
Brodeur started why?
And GOD FORBID this team EVER has to play TWO back to back afternoon games.
Jesus Christ what a fvcking embarrassment.
fvck this team.
I think it's hilarious how there's no mention of our game on the homepage of NHL.com. Two of the biggest rivals, where Marty stood on his head, yet, you'd never know it took place. I bet if the Rags won, the NHL would be singing a different tune
I think this is all just posturing from the players about not coming back to the NHL if they cut wages, but I thought I might scare a few people for a second, so I shared this with everyone, lol. The way Kovy was talking gives me the impression that despite the deal the NHL just put on the table, things are probably still on track to lose half the season and start around New Years.
On a side note, seems like Kovy is tearing it up over in the KHL with a stat line of: 7G 13A 20P 11GP. Just wish he could be doing that over here for NJ.....
Well, that was about as decisive a win for Obama as the first debate was for Romney. Romney basically commended the Obama administration for their work during his term and sounded pretty desperate in the final statement. "This nation is the hope of the earth"....a little over the top Mitt
Obviously. Brodeur will go down as one of the best of all time. But one thing that most anti-Brodeur supporters point to is the fact that he never won a Hart or Conn Smythe.
1) The Hart Trophy
2006-2007 was easily Brodeur's best chance at winning the Hart. He set the all time record for wins in a season (48) and passed Roy for most OT wins (45). He posted a 2.18 GAA and a .922 SVP with 12 shutouts. These numbers are flat out insane, especially considering this is only a year after the new rules. Crosby won it because he scored 120 pts, a very good number, but not out of this world.
2) The Conn Smythe Trophy
Brodeur didn't deserve the Smythe in 1995 or 2000. Claude Lemieux was money in 95 and we all are aware of Scott Stevens' impact in 2000. However, in 2003, Brodeur was 16-8 with a 1.65 GAA and a .934 SVP with 7 shutouts. J.S Giguere obviously put up great numbers, and I'm not arguing the decision, but it could have gone either way.