After beginning the season with three losses, the Devils have strung together three straight wins, obtaining 7 of their last possible 8 points, all four games being decided in overtime or shootout. I wouldn't bet on them making the playoffs, but the way they are in every game and put the opposing team back on their heals at the end of the game shows that they have potential. The way they never give up and keep playing exemplifies John Hynes coaching ability.
Watching last night's game against the Senators, I was far from impressed with Eric Gelinas. Just topping 11 minutes of ice time (almost 2 of them on the pp), he played the least amount of all the defense, with Schlemko the next closest logging 17 minutes. Gelinas was a team worst minus 2. Both times he gave the puck up trying to use his backhand, the first attempting a neutral zone saucer pass on the power play that led to a breakaway goal. The second was a no-look backhand up the boards in his own zone that led to a goal. Both of these plays were totally avoidable. After the first measly backhand pass, I thought he would learn his lesson but he went and did it again. Gelinas has talent, but he has to learn from his mistakes.
Lee Stempniak played a great game, having a goal and assist plus the shootout deciding goal. I can't believe he wasn't signed before camp starts by any team. The Devils got two robs by signing Tlustly and Stem for almost nothing.
Matteau was minus 1 with only five minutes of ice time; however he did have three shots. For a former first round pick he needs more ice time, but sadly I don't think he will ever be more than a third line grinder/power-forward. He was never a goal scorer, but he can still bring something to the team.
That's it. Thanks for reading!