Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Mike Brophy of the Hockey News,
Watch the Devils in the opposition’s end. Their players are sticking around to try to make things happen on offense rather than automatically dropping back to defend. Even defensive specialists like John Madden and Jay Pandolfo are free to take the odd chance.
Crowds have been dwindling in New Jersey, so this new style of play – along with a brand new building – may help revive interest in the team. I’m not certain the Devils have the personnel at this point to be a Cup contender, but clearly the club is moving in the right direction.
From Guest Contributor, Steve Lepore
“It’s ‘The Rock’, and it opens in 10 days” chimed Mike Emrick to open the Devils-Penguins broadcast on Wednesday night. The reason I mention that quote is because, when I heard the esteemed, multiple-Emmy Winning broadcaster say it…it became real to me, for the first time since all this commotion began! We will be playing in a new building in a mere week! Bon Jovi will be there for 10 days starting next Thursday!
OK, the third one’s not so exciting, but it’s amazing to think that the New Jersey Devils will be playing in a new home in the largest city in the state on October 27th against the Eastern Champion (and the Devils exit sign in the playoffs) Ottawa Senators. Here is some info that will get you primed and ready for “The Rock” on the corner of Mulberry and Edison.
from Fire & Ice,
“I’m not talking about the road anymore,” Sutter said. “I’m tired of talking to you guys about the road, the road, the road. God, we played in Pittsburgh last night and it was a 30-minute flight here and they’ve been lying around here all day to play today. They’re pros. That’s what you’re supposed to do. You play games on the road. It doesn’t matter where you play hockey games. You’ve got to play.”
from Fire & Ice,
Center John Madden, a former Selke Trophy winner and defensive specialist, scored his team-leading fourth goal, but admitted he’s not used to these kind of games.
“I’m not at all,” he said. “We had a lot of chances. So did they. It’s definitely different, a different look. Very entertaining for the fans. I’d like to keep the puck out of our net a little more and continue scoring like we have been. I think that’s doable.”
more on the Devils…
from the NY Post,
Colin White’s vision is still blurry, nearly a month after a self-deflected puck hit his right eye. The Devils defenseman told The Post yesterday he’s not even thinking about playing hockey yet. He’s concentrating on getting his vision back, still uncertain whether surgery may be required.
“Every week I’m being checked out. It’s just going to be a slow process. We’re taking our time with it to make sure everything’s right,” White said yesterday from New Jersey.
from Tom Gulitti of the Record,
Sutter has spoken often already about the adjustment period for the players. After having done things a certain way forever, it’s understandable that they need time to adapt.
At the same time, however, Sutter might need to do some adjusting himself. Sutter’s belief in himself and his system is impressive, but good coaches adapt to the talent they have, too.
I’m not saying he should abandon his system after just four games. In fact, it’s refreshing to have a coach who doesn’t relentlessly match lines to the point that his best offensive players don’t get on the ice.
From Rich Chere at the Star-Ledger,
Parise’s story has been well-documented. The son of former NHL player J.P. Parise, he was bypassed by his father’s old team, the Islanders, in the 2003 entry draft. The Devils picked him 17th overall, and both the Islanders and their fans have agonized over the decision ever since.
After leading the Devils with 31 goals last season, his sophomore season in the NHL, Parise is regarded as one of the league’s rising young stars. This past summer the Devils signed him to a four-year, $12.5 million contract and it figures to be a bargain if he does what everyone believes he will do.
“He can be one of the best players in the league,” right winger Brian Gionta said. “He’s a young guy still (23). He broke out last year, but there is still a lot to be seen from Zach. He has a lot of skill, he works hard and he has a nose for the net.”
from the NY Post,
“It’s a long year. We’re only four games in,” Brent Sutter said after the Devils fell to 1-3 on the season, shut out 3-0 by the Panthers here last night. “The guys are competing and playing hard. I don’t have an issue with that at all.”
But the Devils may be taking this egalitarian “all men are created equal” stuff too far. It’s as if they’re trying to prove - by necessity - that systems are more important than skill. The evidence is mounting against them.
from the NY Post,
Lamoriello indicated he’d pursue a deal rather than seek waivers on Matvichuk, who is slated to earn $1.3 million this season. He is in the last year of a contract he signed as an unrestricted free agent July 12, 2004, before the last lockout and before the advent of the “new” NHL.
Lamoriello, asked if Matvichuk was not suited to Sutter’s more aggressive system, said, “I would have to say that, yes.”
Martin Brodeur said, “He proved last year when he stepped in that he could do the job. He’s still a pretty gritty player, blocking shots and being mean. His speed has a lot to do with it.”
from Tom Gulitti at Fire & Ice,
Brent Sutter clearly wasn’t happy after this one and held a closed-doors meeting before the media was allowed in the locker room. In fact, Sutter pulled Arron Asham, who scored his first goal as a Devil in the second period, out of a live interview with the Devils’ radio team so he wouldn’t miss the meeting.
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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