Devils

Schwei On Ice: A Tale Of Two Coaches

Head coach Jacques Lemaire of the New Jersey Devils (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images),  former head coach John MacLean (Photo by Christopher Pasatieri/Getty Images)

Head coach Jacques Lemaire of the New Jersey Devils (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images), former head coach John MacLean (Photo by Christopher Pasatieri/Getty Images)

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By John Schweibacher
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The New Jersey Devils return from the All-Star break having played 16 games under Jacques Lemaire, who replaced John MacLean 33 games into the season. Here is a comparative look at some of the team and individual player statistics under each of the two New Jersey coaches so far:

Coach — W-L-O/L — Pts — Pct. — Goals — Opp. Goals
· MacLean — 9-22-2 — 20 — .303 — 59 — 103
· Lemaire — 7-8-1 — 15 — .469 — 42 — 43

Player — G-A-Pts/MacLean — G-A-Pts/Lemaire
· Patrik Elias — 7-16-23 — 6-8-14
· Ilya Kovalchuk — 8-10-18 — 6-5-11
· Travis Zajac — 3-14-17 — 4-5-9
· Jason Arnott — 9-6-15 — 3-4-7
· Andy Greene — 2-8-10 — 1-7-8
· Dainius Zubrus — 4-9-13 — 3-1-4
· Brian Rolston — 2-3-5 — 4-7-11
· David Clarkson — 4-3-7 — 4-1-5
· Jamie Langenbrunner — 3-9-12 — 1-1-2*
· Mattias Tedenby — 4-4-8 — 1-2-3
· Henrik Tallinder — 1-3-4 — 1-3-4
· Rod Pelley — 0-1-1 — 3-3-6
· Zach Parise — 3-3-6 — DNP
· Matt Corrente — 0-4-0 — 0-2-2
· Matt Taormina — 3-2-5 — DNP
· Mark Fayne — 1-0-1 — 1-3-4
· Alexander Vasyunov — 1-4-5 — 0-0-0
· Nick Palmieri — DNP — 3-1-4
· Anton Volchenkov — 0-0-0 — 0-3-0
· Vladimir Zharkov — 0-0-0 — 1-1-2
· Adam Mair — 1-0-1 — 0-1-1
· Colin White — 0-1-1 — 0-1-1
· Anssi Salmela — 0-0-0 — 0-2-2
· Tim Sestito — 0-0-0 — 0-2-2
· Brad Mills — 1-0-1 — DNP
· Mark Fraser — 0-0-0 — 0-2-2

(*traded on January 7th, 2011. DNP-did not or have not played for one of the two head coaches.)

Goalie — W-L-O/L MacLean — W-L-O/L Lemaire
· Martin Brodeur — 5-15-1 — 5-4-1
· Johan Hedberg — 4-6-1 — 2-4-0

Goalie — GA — GAA MacLean — GA — GAA Lemaire
· Martin Brodeur — 61 — 2.86 — 28 — 2.80
· Johan Hedberg — 32 — 3.08 — 14 2.59

The Devils will reach the 50-game mark of the 2010-11 NHL season when they take on the Ottawa Senators Tuesday night at Prudential Center.

A year ago, the Devils set a club mark for their best-ever record through 50 games. This season, New Jersey will manage to post no better than their fourth-worst 50-game point total.

New Jersey Devils Worst Point Totals through 50 Games:

· 1983-84 10-35-5 25pts
· 1982-83 10-29-11 31pts
· 1985-86 15-33-2 32pts
· 2010-11 16-30-3 35pts*
· 1984-85 16-29-5 37pts
*through 49 games

New Jersey Devils Best Point Totals through 50 Games:

· 2009-10 34-15-1 69pts
· 2008-09 32-15-3 67pts
· 1999-00 31-14-5 67pts
· 1997-98 31-15-4 66pts
· 2002-03 31-16-3 65pts
· 2006-07 30-15-5 65pts

The Devils’ meeting with Ottawa will be their second of the season. The Senators’ 3-2 win over New Jersey back in the first meeting on December 10th was their 2nd straight over the Devils after dropping nine in a row vs. New Jersey. The two clubs will meet twice more this season, with both games taking place in March.

New Jersey is 0-for-3 so far against the cross-river rival New York Rangers who they will visit Thursday night at Madison Square Garden. Jacques Lemaire led the Devils to only two regular season wins against the Rangers at the Garden in his first stint as head coach from 1993 through 1998, going 2-5-5, but matched that total with a pair of wins in three tries last season at MSG.

The Devils and Panthers will meet for the third time in the past three weeks Friday night when the two clubs face-off in Newark. Florida took the first contest, 3-2, in overtime back on January 15th in Sunrise while New Jersey won, 5-2, eight day later at The Rock. The final game between the two clubs will be on February 27th in Florida.

Super Bowl Sunday will feature an afternoon contest between the Devils and Canadiens in Montreal. The fact that New Jersey and Montreal are playing each other this Sunday may not bode well for this season’s NFC Champions.

The last time New Jersey played a game on Super Bowl Sunday was back on January 25th, 1998 and it was also in Montreal. That night, the Green Bay Packers lost to the Denver Broncos, 31-24, in Super Bowl XXXII.

The Devils defeated the Canadiens on that Super Sunday 13 years ago, 3-1, with goals from Lyle Odelein, Bobby Holik and Brian Rolston. Rolston is one of four current New Jersey players who appeared in that game, joined by Patrik Elias, Jason Arnott and Martin Brodeur, who got the win against the Habs’ Andy Moog. The victory was also Jacques Lemaire’s last in Montreal against his former team in his first stint as Devils coach.

Schwei’s Plus/Minus:

Plus: NHL. Give credit to Brendan Shanahan, whose Hall-of-Fame career began and ended in New Jersey, for helping to create the league’s new All-Star Draft.

Minus: NHL. When will the All-Star Game come back to New Jersey? Only the Sabres (1978), Capitals (1982) and Islanders (1983) have waited longer than the Devils (1984) have since last hosting the mid-season event.

pixy Schwei On Ice: A Tale Of Two Coaches