Bleacher Report comprised a list of reasons why the Devils should bench Martin Brodeur. The reasons are: Age, Goals Against Average, Keith Kinkaid, Johan Hedberg and finally One More For Marty.
Yes it is a know fact that Brodeur is one of the older goaltenders in the league and some of his play has showed it. But I think that he is still a competitive enough goaltender to play. Maybe he shouldn’t be playing as much as he is but he should not be replaced by any means.
Goals Against Average. Just look at the defense in front of him and how they have been playing. Anybody’s goals against average is going to go up with the way they have been playing. Weak excuse to me.
Keith Kinkaid is playing rather well in Albany and quite possible can be the heir to the net for the Devils in due time. But this is his rookie year in Albany and even though his play is good I think it is too quick to be bringing him up to the big leagues.
Johan Hedberg should definitely be getting more starts in net. Out of this entire list I think this one makes the most sense. Hedberg has been at times outplaying Brodeur and should only be another reason as to why Brodeur should be getting less starts. But Hedberg should not be the main guy in net but instead more of a tandem.
The “One More For Marty” reason to me is not a valid reason why. I could understand if Marty had not won a Stanley Cup (i.e. The end of Ray Bourque’s career) but Marty has accomplished everything a goaltender can achieve along with 3 Stanley Cups. So is there a need to replace Brodeur for that reason. Absolutely not.
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Rangers and Islanders recap
Interview with Adam Proteau of The Hockey News
Forecast: Bobby Ryan trade talk and Devils Preview
With the Ducks being one of the worst teams in the NHL, it seems like changes are going to be coming to the Ducks. Rumors have been swirling that Bobby Ryan could be on the move. The New Jersey native still have 5 years left on his deal at $5.1 million a year. The Devils have $3.1 million left in cap space so if they were to make a move they would need to move at least $2 million.
Now keep in mind this is NOT fact in any way. Its merely just my opinion.
Right now the Devils are one of the bubble teams to make the playoffs. Ryan’s offensive skill would definitely help the Devils’ struggling offense. I think the player that could go to Anaheim would be David Clarkson. Clarkson would be a great player that could impact the Ducks in other ways than scoring goals.
So lets say this deal happens and Clarkson goes (along with probably some draft picks and prospects) and Zajac comes back here are some good line combinations.
If you ask me that gives the Devils 4 solid lines that can provide something offensively. This gives the Devils a true right wing on the top line. Ryan is that kind of player that can push the Devils into the playoffs and possibly beyond. So in my opinion I think the Devils should go after him.
My final point I think Ryan is the kind of player that can keep the team competitive enough for Parise to want to resign even if it means taking a pay cut. Parise wants to win so if Ryan can help the Devils win he’ll stay even if its for $6 million a year.
Hockey Buzz has heard that if the Devils are still in the playoff race that they could be in the market for a veteran defenseman. They specifically cite Tim Gleason or Toni Lydman that would fit with the Devils.
To be honest I think the Devils need to find a more offensive defenseman. Both Gleason and Lydman are not really point producing defenseman, they need a young offensive defenseman. The Devils need more goals and a defenseman could possibly replace Kovalchuk on the point on the power play which could get the powerplay going.
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ESPN posted its weekly power rankings. The Devils have moved up despite their mediocre play against the bottom dwelling teams. The mention that the Devils have two of the NHL’s best rookies in Adam Larsson and Adam Henrique. They also point out the stat that the Devils have the best PK in the NHL but they have mentioned that they have given up the most shorthanded goals in the NHL.
The Devils finished their home and home series with the New York Islanders this weekend in a somewhat disappointing way. If there is one thing this series proved was that the Devils are in no short of goaltending. The play of Johan Hedberg and Martin Brodeur kept the Devils in both games. It seemed like time after time the goaltenders were bailing out the defense.
To put it bluntly the defense was awful. It seemed like Michael Grabner was allowed to just walk in whenever he wanted and rip a shot on net. The defense was very hesitant about the moves they were making. They were thinking too much and before they knew it the puck was going the other way on a break away. But alas it was not the defense that would cause the biggest turnover of the game.
Ilya Kovalchuk plays the point on the powerplay. Nothing too out of the ordinary but he is not used to carrying the puck out of the defensive zone. Well this time he got burnt and burnt badly. He got pick pocketed by Grabner and scored what would be the game winning goal. Kovalchuk would admit to taking “all the blame” for the goal.
After that mistake Kovalchuk was a mess. He was not comfortable with the puck, turning it over. Shortly after the goal he had a chance to hammer home a rebound but was caught with a high stick to the cheek thanks to John Tavares. In a frustrated rage Kovalchuk had some rather unpleasant words for the referees that would warrant him a 2 minute minor for unsportsman like conduct.
“I’m not condoning what he did. I think he could’ve channeled it a little different.” DeBoer said on the Kovalchuk penalty.
Neither the defense nor Kovalchuk’s mistakes were even the biggest story of the whole game. The most crucial point in the game would come off the stick (or foot) of Zach Parise with just 5 seconds left in the game.
With the faceoff in the Islander zone Dainius Zubrus managed to get the puck to the crease with Zach Parise crashing the net. The puck goes off Parise’s stick then off Montoya’s pad and then off Parise’s skate to the back of the net. The Prudential Center erupted when the puck crossed the goal line. The play was instantly put under review. After many different angles later, they disallowed the goal claiming that the puck was kicked in with a distinct kicking motion.
“I knew it hit off my skate. I knew it hit off my stick too, but if that’s a kicking motion, then I don’t know.” Parise said later after cooling off.
Coach Peter DeBoer commented on the Parise disallowed goal, “He deserves one and sure it would have been a big boost, but this league doesn’t afford you the time to feel sorry for yourself.”
The whole team should not feel sorry for themselves. In the end it was a rather poor effort by the Devils. They should have been able to get another two points in the standings. Luckily the Devils have a few days off before traveling to Colorado to start a 4 game road trip on Wednesday. This break will only help the team get recomposed because at this point in the season is where teams either rise or fall in the standings and set the tone for the rest of the season.
The Devils’ first line finally started to produce some chances which ultimately lead to Larsson scoring his second goal of the season. However the Devils have not tightened up defensively. They surrendered a goal to Josh Bailey who had a pretty nice look in the slot. Someone blew an assignment there.
The Islanders seemed to be controlling the flow of play after the Bailey goal. The Devils need to fight the Isles’ forecheck and get a great break out going that will lead to chances that will swing momentum their way. Devils need to pick it up in the 3rd. They should not be losing this game.
Brodeur made some huge saves at the end of the period to bail the defense out again after a breakaway. Goaltending is keeping the Devils in this game. Devils need to produce and not be sloppy.
The game started off with each team trying to feel each other out. The Devils were spending a lot of time in the Islander zone but were not able to get any quality chances. The Devils defensively were did not seem like they were sure what they were doing at times. The defense needs to settle down and get to thinking quick. Like I said pregame, they need confidence. Right now, there is not a lot there.
The 3rd and 4th lines were the best lines in that period. They were grinding well deep in the offensive zone and generated a few chances. The first two lines need to get going fast. The first line did not do a thing. Not good.
The Devils and Islanders finish up their home and home series this afternoon at the Prudential Center. The last two games the Devils have just been able to eek by the two bottom teams of the NHL. The Devils won yesterday’s game 1-0 with Johan Hedberg constantly saving their skin. That can’t happen today.
The defense needs to play better in front of Brodeur who is starting in place of Hedberg. The turnover by Adam Larsson in the 3rd period that led to the penalty shot is inexcusable and Larsson must bounce back from his poor play with a strong effort today. If the defense plays smart they should be able to stop the Islanders’ offense.
We should expect more of the offense today since they were only able to produce one goal yesterday. Zach Parise has been goalless in 4 games. He needs to break out of that today and produce. I feel that the most consistent line is the Zubrus-Elias-Sykora line but you can’t rely on just that line to produce. The first line should be able to contribute immensely. Expect lots of chances coming from the first line.
Marty needs to be Marty. He needs to play confident. He can not be afraid to challenge the shooter. If not this Islander team could jump on him early.
Confidence and smart play should lead to a Devils’ victory.
Second Period- Sykora (5)
Third Period- None
Next Game: 11/26 vs New York Islanders 1:00 pm.
Adam Larsson Postgame:
“I felt good in the 2nd period. I thought I played really good and then I made a mistake and then I sat for like 12 minutes. Then it’s tough to come in on the PP like that.”
Peter DeBoer Postgame:
On Adam Larsson ”When he was supposed to go left, he went right tonight and when he was supposed to go right, he went left. He’s going to have nights like that.”
“We didn’t start the way we wanted to with the penalties and kind of kept ourselves out the game early but our penalty kill and our goaltender bailed us out and gave us a chance to get our legs.”
Islanders outdrew the Devils 34-22
Islanders tied the Devils in shots 23-23
Devils went 1 for 2 on the power play.
Islanders outhit the Devils 32-27
Again the Devils’ penalty kill brings momentum back to their side. The play of Johan Hedberg is the exact reason why the Devils won this game. Hedberg stopping the penalty shot in the 3rd period saved the Devils from another possible defeat.