4 : a number of persons associated together in work or activity: as
a : a group on one side
The guys that have contracts with the New Jersey Devils organization are definitely not a team. And it’s just a joy to see those group of guys suffer.
Yes, the Flyers got down 1-0 and 2-1 before ultimately coming back for a 4-2 win. But was any Flyers fan really worried, at any part of the game? Did we really think this group of Devils could befuddle us, and keep us down? Come on, of course not. This game was in the bag before the puck dropped. The beautiful thing about hockey is that you never know how it will happen. We got lucky bounces, lucky tips, and overcame a somewhat surprising Devils defense.
The Devils came in with the right strategy for this game. The Flyers are significantly more talented, thus, they needed to be limited as much as possible. And they were, to only 20 shots. However, NJ doesn’t have any transition game that it can consistently rely on. In the first 30 minutes, the Flyers entered the zone, and lost the puck fairly easily. But NJdidn’t manage to create anything going the other way. Their offense, broken down simply, is just a bunch of guys either doing it themselves or running a few plays they tried in practice. There’s really no system, just a variety of things they try. For the Flyers, it’s easy to defend.
Big props go to Briere and Hartnell for each guy getting a pair of goals. They were ugly, but they count. Boucher played awesome, again. His best save came after O’Donnellwhiffed on an icing touch-up, and the puck came into the slot. Boosh was ready for it though, as he turned aside whoever the hell it was that tried to slap it past him.
When Clarkson scored to put the Devils up 2-1, play kept going for a minute because the puck came out so fast that nobody was sure if it had gone in. Now, I know the rule is that once the play is reviewed, anything that happens afterwards is erased from the history books. Any goals scored don’t count. But what if there were to be a brawl. What if something ignited players to come off the bench, and all 20 guys wearing skates went at it. Then, would all penalties be null and void once the goal was credited, and time reset? Would nobody be penalized?
Lastly, rumors are floating that the Devils are trying to unload captain Jaime Langenbrunner, and that the Flyersamy be interested. At first thought, I don’t want him. He’s old (35), and doesn’t add much offense (14 points). But, he was a key player on 2 Stanley Cup Teams (Dallas and NJ), and we’ve got room for him. We can end the Shelley experiment finally. He has spent his whole career playing for defensive teams, so he’s got to be a big help on the PK. If he fits into the salary cap, why not? He’s an unrestricted free agent after this season, so if he doesn’t work out, he’s gone. If he’s a good fit, he won’t be very expensive to resign.
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