Archive for the ‘New Jersey Devils’ Category

NHL Division-By-Division Power Rankings: Southeast Division Weak No More

November 2nd, 2010 No Comments

Three weeks and one calender month into the 2010-2011 NHL season, we’ve already begun to be able to pick out the surprises and disappointments of the year. Teams like Buffalo and New Jersey, two top-ranked teams from the Eastern Conference last season, have both struggled to get going and posted a combined 0-8-2 home record, while franchises such as Montreal, Boston, and Tampa Bay have burst onto the stage with a combined 20-7-2 record. Meanwhile, in the West, Nashville, Edmonton, and Dallas started out strongly but have faltered lately, while, on the other hand, youthful squads such as St. Louis, Colorado, and Los Angeles have already begun to prove their legitimacy. But how does the NHL look from a divisional standpoint? Which five-team groups have been the toughest to play in so far, while which divisions have struggled despite their

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Ilya Kovalchuk Benched: Are the New Jersey Devils Stupid?

October 23rd, 2010 No Comments

Through the first seven games of the season, the New Jersey Devils accumulated a disappointing 2-4-1 record, averaged a league-low 1.86 goals per game, sat 22nd overall with a 3.00 goals against average and owned the 21st-ranked power play (9.5 percent)—with just two goals. Needless to say, with so much going wrong for the Devils in the early going, change was bound to come. In a shocking move, the Devils chose to make a statement by benching their prized free agent signee, Ilya Kovalchuk, in their match against the Buffalo Sabres Saturday night. Through seven games, Kovalchuk has amassed a total of two goals and five points to go along with a minus-three rating. While not horrible statistically, Kovalchuk has yet to score on the power play, has been questionable at best defensively and is yet to be the impact

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Lou Lamoriello’s Gamble Not Paying Dividends

October 17th, 2010 No Comments

When Lou Lamoriello made the move to bring in Ilya Kovalchuk to the New Jersey Devils organization it was thought that he may represent the final piece to the Devils Stanley Cup aspirations. Thwarted in the first round of the playoffs by the Philadelphia Flyers, Lou’s gamble didn’t pay off, costing him defenseman Johnny Oduya, rookie forward Niclas Bergfors, prospect Patrice Cormier and New Jersey’s 2010 first round draft pick. At the time of the deal the gamble was seen as a high-risk/high reward type of deal. That said, let’s face it, Lou Lamoriello rarely makes a bad move—but this time, given what the Devils have given up and the trouble the teams looks to be in for the forseeable future, it’s pretty safe to say that Lou came out on the short end of the deal this time no matter

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2010-11 NHL Power Rankings: The Quintessential Report

October 10th, 2010 No Comments

With the NHL pre-season behind us it’s almost time to start the regular season where all 30 NHL teams will drop the puck in anger for the first time. There was plenty of movement this summer, which should help change the landscape of the NHL standings in a big way from where the teams finished in 2009-10. Sure, the Washington Capitals, Pittsburgh Penguins, San Jose Sharks, Vancouver Canucks and New Jersey Devils are bound to be amongst the NHL’s elite teams, it’s in the bottom ranks that we will see the most change. Off-season improvements from teams such as the Tampa Bay Lightning, Atlanta Thrashers, Toronto Maple Leafs and Boston Bruins should equate to big changes in the Eastern Conference, while Western Conference teams such as the Los Angeles Kings, Calgary Flames and Phoenix Coyotes should help determine the playoff

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NHL: 2010-11 Eastern Conference Playoff Picks

September 30th, 2010 2 Comments

With the regular season just a few days away from commencing there are still a lot of roster decisions to be made. That said, for the most part, the top three lines on most NHL rosters are all but set, which makes it all the easier to make some solid predictions for the upcoming 2010-11 season. The following is a look at the Eastern Conference teams and where I see these teams finishing. Washington Capitals: Prediction- 1st In the Eastern Conference. After an excellent regular season which saw the Capitals earn the Presidents Trophy and set all kinds of franchise records along the way, the Caps fell victim to Montreal Canadiens goaltender Jaroslav Halak’s superb goaltending in the first round of the playoffs. Consdering just how poorly the Capitals season ended,  you just got to believe that the Capitals will come back with a

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Ilya Kovalchuk: Was He Worth The Price The Devils Paid?

September 14th, 2010 2 Comments

On February 4th, 2010, the New Jersey Devils made a huge splash on the trade market when they acquired Ilya Kovalchuk and Anssi Salmela from the Atlanta Thrashers in exchange for defenseman Johnny Oduya, rookie forward Niclas Bergfors, prospect Patrice Cormier and New Jersey’s 2010 first round draft pick. Prior to the deal, the Thrashers organization were extremely diligent in trying to sign their franchise player to a long term contract and were said to have offered the Russian sniper a 12-year contract that would have seen Kovalchuk earn a reported $101 million. Unable to sign Kovalchuk, Thrashers general manager Don Waddell made what many NHL experts said was a moderately good deal—a deal, that in hindsight, just keeps getting better. How is it that trading your franchise player for a mid-tier defenseman, a rookie forward, a prospect and a

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