The Least You Should Know:
The Devils allowed a goal to Nick Foligno with 1:31 to go, which turned out to be the game-winning marker.
Damien Brunner broke his 17-game goalless drought with a pair of tallies. He last scored on October 26 at Boston.
With two assists in tonight's loss, Patrik Elias now has points in his last four games.
This is the second game the Devils have lost year when they've scored at least four goals. This was the first one in regulation and it stung bad. Perhaps they didn't deserve to win after watching their final 30 minutes, but they needed to sneak a point out of this contest.
This team just refuses to mark up people in front of the net. Be sure to watch for that closely the next time the Devils are on, specifically on their power play. They leave Martin Brodeur hanging in front with an opposing forward right in his face. I'd rather a player walk right in from the circle with a clear path to the goal rather than let a guy receive the puck, unmarked in front of the crease. That should never happen, ever. They gave up several goals because of that tonight; Calvert's in the third period and the final one to Foligno. They really have no physical players on defense besides Anton Volchenkov and he has trouble keeping his balance on the ice.
After this game became 3-3. the offense went into a shell. How many true chances were there for forwards? Very few, if any. Tons of shots from the point, which is normally not a good thing. After having wide open transitions through the neutral zone in the first 30 minutes, this team could barely dump the puck in as the game winded down.
This Devils team, as currently constructed, is going to lose a fair share of games. They're not an extremely talented squad. They have to earn everything. Despite all that, they cannot afford to lose games when they score four goals. The way things are starting to shake out, I'd have to believe the race for the final few spots in the Eastern Conference is going to be extraordinarily tight with several teams in the mix. Up to this point, this is the most disappointing loss of the season.
Yes, you could show me the Calgary game or the Edmonton game or any other one from October. That was a different team learning to play with each other. Coming into tonight, this was a team that was consistently putting up great scoring chances and capitalizing enough to record their fair share of points over the last few weeks.
It couldn't come at a worse time. They're heading to Pittsburgh on Friday and then they turn around with a contest in Newark the next day against Lightning team that is no slouch.
Hopefully, this game will be a distant memory come April.