Guest blogger Dana W kept up with the Devils and Sabres game for us. Hopwfully we will see more from him around these parts. Thank you Dana!!
I know I am supposed to write a recap, but today, I am going to 'recap' for you Devil fans as the action unfolds. This might get a bit long winded, but I dont want to leave anything out.
As I sit here, waiting for the game to start, wearing my throw back 'Christmas Colors' #30, I am pondering if we have what it takes to make it to the play offs this season. In my last report I talked about how proud I was even though we lost, and last nights game reaffirmed what I had said. We really are a contender, going goal for goal. Our current rank and points do not reflect it, but I believe we really are getting better with every game. We were very close to beating, or at least capturing that 'one point' last night against the Bruins. Yes we fell short in the last 3 minutes, but do not forget they are the defending Cup winners. We have played HARD against teams that are ranked higher then us. This is another one of those games.
I see #17 is out on the ice, that is a relief. Even though we are 3-2 with him sidelined, it is always good to see our power winger back on the ice. I expect great things from him this game.
The puck just dropped. Let the game commence.
OH YES! Short handed goal 2:06 in! Man I hope Lou can do something to keep Zach Parise in town next season. He is carrying the team, and he truly is the captain we needed last season to rally the troops.
Its now 4 on 4 and Parise ALMOST sunk another one. I dont think I can write enough about his skills and his team work. His dedication, devotion, and on ice finesse is truly awe-inspiring.
Kovalchuk just flings one past Enroth and through the pipes. Beautiful! That is what we pay him the big bucks for. What a way to come out strong. Oddly enough, Brodeur is given credit for an assist.
I tell yea it is awesome to be able to watch the game as it happens. Not online and not in a bar on a super-low-def TV with no sound. I live in Phillys Comcast market, so when they are home, well I dont watch hockey those nights.
Parise and Kovalchuk, what a great pair. Nice cross ice pass with Kovy taking an off angle one time shot that just went wide.
Even though we are currently 2-0, and we are looking like a team on fire, we having found ourselves in the same hole, climbed out, and won. While I try to keep my spirits up, we DID just hit Enroth, which is a big issue for buffalo, whos other goalie, Miller, was laid out in an earlier game. That might have just rattled their bench enough get them in the game.
Yikes! Pipe ringer! Gotta control that puck guys!
Buffalo charging in again and goes wide at the tip of the crease. Yeah, they are awake, Brodeur is working hard to keep the puck in play and out of the net.
Another successful PK, but, Carter is back in the box not even 3 seconds on the ice.
Buffalo just capitalized on Carters stick indiscretions. Brodeur was fighting hard for that and the puck just squirmed its way out of the pack and was an easy chip in.
First 20 down. 40 left to go. NJ 2 Buf 1
WHAT HAPPENED? We come out looking sloppy! Bad passes, turning over the puck, and getting out skated.
Spending way to much time in our end of the ice and I dont like it. Buffalo must have gotten quite the pep-talk in the intermission, they are playing strong. We are looking so sloppy, its depressing. The first period we were a playing like we wanted to win, we desired the win, we determined to win. Now, we are giving up way to many chances, and way to many bad passes.
Henrique almost puts it in, wins the face off and Fayne finishes it off! 3-1 now! Apparently we were just a bit sleepy? Now we are swarming all over Buffalo. We went from giving away shots to taking charge and firing everything at the net that was fit to shoot. We have become really good at the face-off-quick shot to the top shelf. Sykora has done it twice and now Fayne follows up with the same method for his first goal.
Zubrus is hit HARD and drops. No penalty? I guess it was a clean hit, just really dirty in my book.
Brodeur is just acting like he is in his 20's again. Stacking the pads and up-side-down flying glove catch. Twice now he reminds the sabers why he is a legend.
40 minutes elapsed, Devils 3 Sabers 1
Lets close out these last 20 with a big fat W and 2 points in regulation.
Buffalo had only 4 SOG, but they were very aggressive in our zone.
Did we just set up the trap? The ol' Jersey TRAP PLAY?
That just set up Elias to hit a one timer past Enroth!
THIS is Devils hockey! Hard aggressive offense with the neutral zone trap play.
Wow, what a game this has turned out to be.
What just happened..? Myers just beat the glove and short side of Brodeur to bring them to 2.
CLARKSON with the breakaway and makes it a 3 point game again! Say what you will about how much of a piece of wet paper he is in a fight, the man can finally hit the broad side of a barn, and hit it well. When was the last time that the Devils put 5 up on the board and had LESS SOG then their opponent? I keep saying this, WHAT HAPPENED? Where was this Jersey offense before? I thought they were playing hard, but now, they are playing WELL. The second period must have been a fluke. Passes are crisp, hits are hard, and they are swarming again.
Leopold just bounced one past Marty, he had a pad on it, but it just wasnt enough. Two point game again with just under 5 ticks on the clock.
HA Clarkson wants to fight.. PLEASE please dont..
Empty net, can we take advantage of this? No, but it doesnt matter.
The horn sounds and the Devils have posted 5 goals and played such an awesome game.
Devils be proud!
Who is this Deb Placey chick? I understand that she used to announce the Islander games. I mean, really, what do the Devils need the Islanders’ sloppy seconds for? Wasn’t there a retired Devil available to sit with Dano, or at least someone with a modicum of hockey knowledge???
Was Steve’s hair slicked back like that during the two previous games? I hadn’t noticed.
Simon Gagne??? Is it just me, or does he seem to play for every team that faces the Devils?
What’s up with the Devils’ defense…it’s non-existent.
I’m getting sick and tired of the Devils being offside practically every time they try to enter the O zone (which hasn’t been too often thus far).
When Rod Pelley has 50% of your shots on goal there’s a problem.
Beautiful goal by Elias! Awesome work and pressure by that whole line.
That’s what happens when you get to rebounds…you score!
Did we ever figure out what Palmieri is doing on a line with Kovy?
I find myself clenching my teeth every time Clarkson’s on the ice. Grr…
I really wish NHL Gamecenter Live would change the music they play during commercial breaks. It’s driving me crazy!!!
The Kings are taking a lot of shots from the points and actually finding lanes.
Marty isn’t playing. Hope he’s ok.
Kovy’s line applying more pressure this period so far.
Tallinder actually made a nice play on Kopitar.
Moose playing well considering he came in cold off the bench.
Ugh! That music again!
No! Please don’t show a close up of Clarkson. I’m going to get TMJ one of these days.
Andy Greene is flying all over the place!
If Clarkson loses the puck one more time…
Does Kovy just not require talented linemates? Can he do everything on his own?
Great. Just when the Devils seemed to be playing well, they get a PP. (Thanks to none other than Clarkson).
WHY IS CLARKSON ON THE PP? He had a shot alone with the goaltender and blew it!
PP looked better overall but no goal nonetheless.
Sykora almost scores from the slot.
Volchenkov takes a huge shot from the point.
It’s all Devils so far this period.
As usual, the Devils are working so hard but still can’t score.
Sykora has yet another chance right in front of the goal and hits the post.
I’m really liking Sykora being back on the team, so far. It’s just a matter of time before he starts putting the puck in the net. I can just feel it…
Wow…Larsson is super fast.
Why do the Devils have like 6 days between games next week? Who makes these schedules???
Close one as a puck rolls by Moose.
If an official ties up the puck, should the team carrying it be called for offsides? That’s BS.
Moose comes way out to play the puck as the Devs are stuck in a change.
Larsson makes a huge block. Limps slightly as he comes off the ice. They weren’t kidding when they said this kid was NHL ready.
Kind of a delayed offsides called. (Yet another one).
Zach is drilled and draws a penalty.
Why is Clarkson on the first PP unit???
Lots of chances but no goal.
The Devs ice the puck while on the PP. Why not?
End of regulation. 16 seconds left on Devils’ PP.
PP comes up empty.
Should Josefson and Palmieri really be the two forwards on the ice in OT?
Moose comes up with a HUGE kick save!
Come on and score…we need a W.
The Kings are like the Flyers 2.0. Lol.
DeBoer is asking Oates about his selections…not a good sign.
If the Devils lose this game, I’m going to be really pissed off. It seems like the Devils worked so much harder than the Kings for most of the game. They certainly dominated the second half of regulation. They just weren’t able to score, as usual.
Devs’ shooters: Kovy, Zach and Patty.
Kovy scores!!! With a beautiful backhand.
Moose denies Gagne!
Zach scores!!! Also a backhand.
Moose stops Kopitar!
3 star selection is strange Patty gets 2nd star. 1st and 2nd stars go to Kings players???
Occasionally, we will do an "as they play" post where we share thoughts on the period, usually at the end of each period. Please check back at the end of each period to see an update to the post.
* It's currently 82 degrees in NJ and feels like a day that should be spent at the beach, not at the hockey rink.
* The only feed I can get of the game because I am at work is the Hurricanes feed. Life is vastly different in North Carolina than it is here in NJ isn't it??
* Nice goal by Parise. Nice to get a quick goal and gain some confidence after being shutout by the Fyers on opening night.
* I do like the Sykora/Elias combination. It looks much better than the Arnott/Elias combo last season.
* I wish Larsson had picked any number other than 5. Colin White has made me hate that number on a Devils uniform!!
* Powerplay still isn't where I would like it to be. For one, Elias held on to the puck for way to long. Putting the puck in the net on a PP is all about effectively moving the puck. Standing there waiting for something to open up is not effecitvely moving the puck.
* Wow Ilya Kovalchuk playing some nice defense as Staal exited the box.
* The first period ends and the Devils lead 1-0 on the scoreboad and lead 11 shots to Carolina's 8 shots. Still taking too many penalties for my liking.
* Adam Larsson played over 8 minutes in the first period. Does it seem like too much for a rookie or are we just that confident in his abilities?
* A bad penalty by Petr Sykora for holding the stick of Chad LaRose. Carolina 0-2 on the PP so far today.
* Shorthanded oppurtunity for Elias, not much of an oppurtunity.
* I personally like putting Kovalchuk on a line with two youngsters. I think it will cause him to grip it and rip it more often.
* Year 2 in a Devils uniform and Tallinder still makes too many mistakes for my liking.
* Carolina finds the equalizer.. Ponakwhatever puts it past Hedberg as Sutter camps out in front.
* NJ did a nice job answering back and getting the go ahead goal. Kovalchuk made a great pass and give Fayne credit for taking his time to make sure he got the puck and put it past Cam Ward.
* Clarkson sucks, can we please trade scratch him??
* LaRose knots it up at 2. Dueces wild! This game continues to be a see-saw. Tallinder looked like crap on that goal. He's quickly joining Clarkson on my "list."
* Zubrus off for tripping, Jokinen off for Diving... 4 on 4 here we come!!
* Parise just deked Faulk out of his pants. Parise looking very comfortable.
* Hurricanes announcers just butchered Alexander Vasyunov's name.
* WOW... ugly cross check from behind by Pitkanen. Parise gets up a little slowly.
* Kovalchuk takes his sweet ass time to go get a new stick while on the power play.
* Larsson in obvious pain on the bench.
* Carolina delay of game.. 5on3..nothing comes of it.
* WHAT THE HELL KOVALCHUK??? Almost stuck on in his own net.
* End of 2, tied at 2. Devils 16 shots, Canes 16 shots, Kovalchuk 1 shot on Hedberg..ASS!!
* Larsson leading all Devils with TOI with 17:55. Clarkson has 9:06 which is 9:06 too much.
* Devils start the 3rd with :35 left on the PP. Devils fail to score 0-4 so far..Adam Oates really earning that paycheck.
* Palmieri with a bad tripping penalty. Carolina PP attempt #4
* Elias going off for Goalie Interfence but Ward is way out side the crease area and Elias did try to get out of the way.
* Eric Staal trying to play the part of hero today.
* Devils kill on the 5 on 3 and the ensuing 5 on 4. Momentum where are you??
* SCOOOOORRRRREEEEEEE!!! Ilya Kovalchuk... Guess he figured out which goalie to shoot at. It helps that he put the Carolina goalie in front of this net for the 3rd period.
* Did you know Kovalchuk now has 33 goals and 65 points against Carolina, more than any other team in the league??
* Clarkson should get Gleason's number after the game and ask him for pointers because Gleason knows exactly what Clarkson is going to do with the puck. I'm only guessing here, but Gleason might know before Clarkson knows.
* A close game like this is where a Captain is needed. Keep them in it Zach...
* In order, the list of Hurricanes that scare me late in a close game... Sutter, Staal, Skinner...
* Hurricanes pull Ward but Ponakwhatever gets called for Interference.
* Ward lifted again 5on5 empty net. Parise with the EN goal.
* Things getting chippy and the refs don't let Mills and Faulk go. Devils go back on the PP.
* Devils win 4-2, DeBoer gets his first as the Devils head coach. Goals by Parise, Fayne and Kovalchuk.