The Devils finally lost in regulation at home the other night to the Carolina Hurricanes ending NJ’s team’s five-game winning streak.
I missed the first period due to prior obligations, but watching the second and third, I saw a sluggish Devils team that seemed to play in awe of the Hurricanes.
Instead of dictating the play and flow of the game, as they did in the previous five games, the Devils let the Hurricanes take control. Sure there were moments of greatness from the team. And yes, they did almost score an equalizer in the final minute of the game before giving up the empty netter, but the fact remains, it was one of those games where the team did not look like the top-tier team they are.
The good thing about this, is that it can be a wake-up call.
Clearly, there are things the team needs to do to win games. Skate hard. Win the battles along the boards. Shoot the puck on net. Seriously, the Devils only had 14 shots on goal after the first two periods. I hate to sound like Yogi Berra, but you can’t score if you don’t get the puck to the net.
However, I’m a fan of the team, so I can always see light in the strangest of places if I look at it right.
Last night forward Bobby Butler, showed me exactly why he remains with team since being called up from Albany. This guy can skate and had a fire burning inside him last night. He wanted to score so badly and gave it his clichéd 110 percent. Andy Greene continues his streak of solid games. He may not have found the score sheet but he was a threat while on the ice, both offensively and defensively.
It is funny to say this, but it is a long season. No team can win every game and the Devils have the perfect opponent for a bounce-back game Friday night – the Philadelphia Flyers. Nothing brings a team together faster than a home game
against one of your most hated rivals.
Let’s go Devils.