No, this team will not bring back the echoes of the great Islanders dynasty of 30-plus years ago. They are not going to win the Stanley Cup this year. But this team is young, hungry and improving. They have become the team that nobody wants to play.
The Devils may have put the brakes on their recent skid with two shootout victories in their last three games.
The Nets will continue to be looking up at teams like the Spurs from echelons below. For now, I will look to be comforted by the Devils, a warm blanket of consistency in New York’s volatile sports landscape.
The Rangers were expected to be ready-made contenders straight out of the gates. So much for that.
The Devils are off to a 3-0-1 start, coming an OT loss shy of matching their best opening four-game stretch in club history.
Travis Zajac is picking up where he left off after a strong 2012 playoffs, as he has two goals in two games to begin the new season.
Who’s primed to lift the Stanley Cup at season’s end? Hartnett has readied his fearless NHL predictions for the 2013 season.
I trust that Lou will find the answer, but it might take him another year.
Throw all the pressure on him and new Devils captain Bryce Salvador has broad enough shoulders to handle whatever DeBoer and the Devils ask of him.
“It’s hard to replace guys like Zach and Sykie,” goaltender Johan Hedberg said. “Those are pure goal-scorers. This will be an opportunity for other guys to step up. We have talent in this system, and sometimes all you need is opportunity.”
Goaltender Martin Brodeur has seen it all in leading the New Jersey Devils to three Stanley Cups and two other finals.
Ilya Kovalchuk’s desire to remain in the KHL must have burned Lou Lamoriello and the Devils up.
The NHL’s return will bring fierce competition for playoff spots, faces in new places and two legends going for one last glory.
Kovalchuk, who signed a 15-year, $100 million contract with New Jersey in 2010, played in a KHL game Tuesday. He told Russian media he was playing to stay in shape pending the end of the lockout.
Instead of merely bean-counting, the NHL’s caretakers should be looking for ways to bring the game back from the muck it’s become.