Swagger on .500, thousand, trillion. Nice to meet you completely average record, it's been far too long old friend. If we are going by the transitive property, I believe tonight's win makes the Devils the most 'now' team in hockey. Who's more now? I mean, by the end of that game the Devils didn't even have to have the puck cross the line before they were awarded a goal. I know Peter Laviollete disagreed as his tears flooded the Visitor's bench, but why delay the inevitable? The Devils don't blow leads anymore. What do you think this is? Three months ago? The Prudential Center. Newark, NJ. The hardest place to play in professional sports. Suck it Seattle. 12th man? Pretty sure the Devils only had 12 fans fight the weather and show up and they still willed the boys to victory over the best team in hockey. Strength in numbers doesn't matter if your numbers have strength.
If I had known that the Devils firing Peter Debeor would have resulted in them retroactively receiving a 4th overall draft pick I would have packed his bags myself. I used to be excited when I saw Adam Larsson step on the ice for warmups, never mind actually play any meaningful hockey. Now I am surprised if he goes an entire game without being responsible for a handful of scoring chances. His snipe that put the Devils up 1-0 early was sexier than half the women I have slept with. There have been mixed results with former players taking on coaching jobs, but maybe there is something to Scott Stevens using his Hall Of Fame credentials to coach up the defense. Besides dick size, I'm not exactly sure what the difference of opinion was between him and Debeor, but it's safe to say Scotty and his third arm have erected the young defense in a way Pete never could. It's not outlandish to say that at the ripe age of 22, Larsson has matured into the best two way defenseman on the team. A team that, with significant help from Cory Schneider, has become one of better defensive teams in hockey. Hell, they have been harder to penetrate than a lesbian feminist on the rag.
Let's get this out of the way. I do not like Marty Havlat or Michael Ryder. With that said, I have to feel bad for them. It's just my duty as a good natured human being. Lou Lamoriello's decision to sit them both in favor of playing Peter Harold at forward is the most humiliating thing that can happen to someone. Granted, it was probably the right decision, but embarrassing nonetheless. Think about this...The Devils took their worst defenseman, and decided to play him out of position instead of playing two players who have had successful NHL tenures to this point. That's the equivalent of slapping them the face, spitting on their shoe, and then kicking them in the dick when they look down. Open the suicide hotline. Their is only so much humiliation a man can take. Hopefully Lou has Havlat locked up in a padded room somewhere. Chances are he will still come out injured. I don't even think Ryder got sat. He is still finishing up the last drill they did at morning skate. At this point, I'm not even sure what it would take for Havlat or Ryder to get considerable playing time. I do know that if the entire team breaks out in mumps again they are suspects one and two.
I can't believe there is anyone out there that thinks the Devils unloading two foreign senior citizens off their roster is any sort of fire sale. With all due respect to Jagr and Zidlicky, both are addition by subtraction. Jagr was unhappy, and I'm pretty sure Zidlicky had gone senile. That's the only explanation for some of his turnovers recently. The guy was more unpredictable than a woman going through menopause as of late. Probably just as fertile too. Either way the Devils are winning, and winning at a rate that no one other than Lou Lamoriello could have even imagined. If the stars align and they make the playoffs it would be nothing short of a miracle, but recent success has given hope for a much brighter future. Three relatively high draft picks can only speed up the 'transition' as the Godfather of NHL executives likes to call it.
This is why Lou doesn't rebuild. I don't know where the Devils go from here into next season in regards to the coaching or the roster. However, it's safe to assume the arrow is pointed up. With one of the best goaltenders in the sport and an embarrassment of riches on the back end, the Devils are a couple difference makers on offense away from being a playoff team. If the NHL has proven anything over it's existence, it's that all it takes is a playoff spot to be a Stanley Cup contender. Despite a continuing lack of high end talent, the Devils have turned around a season that was exempt on any positives whatsoever. Time to close our eyes, and ride that Ginger wave into the postseason. At the very least, the Devils have bought some excitement back to New Jersey.