Edmonton, A.B. - The New Jersey Devils had what some might say as an epic fail of a third period, giving up four goals in a span of 7:47.
The Devils secured a 3-0 going into the third period with goals from Jaromir Jagr, Damien Brunner, and Michael Ryder, but the third period is where the Devils fell apart.
The Edmonton Oilers came out flying in the third period, but it took 5:19 seconds for them to break through when Ryan Nugent-Hopkins scored a power play goal.
Just over four minutes later, the Devils gave up another goal that got deflected off of a Devil in front of the net.
Now here is where things kept getting worse for the Devils. David Perron knotted up the game with a goal right off of the face off. However, this goal could have been prevented if a Devil had come in to help Travis Zajac who got tied up on the face off.
Then the fourth goal came off of the half-boards when three Devils got caught up on the boards and Taylor Hall was left all alone in front of Brodeur. Once again, this could be prevented if they did not have a complete defensive breakdown.
The Devils did get a break though. Patrik Elias banked in a shot off of an Edmonton defenseman. The goal came while the Devils were short-handed and it was during the final minute of the game.
After a strong overtime period, the Devils did not have much luck in the shootout again. They failed to score twice while giving up two goals.
The bright side of this is that the Devils did come away with a point, but the Oilers snatched the second point right out from under their feet. If the Devils continue to fail at closing out the third period it is going to be one long season ahead.
Another thing I noticed in the third period was that the defensemen were just completely flat and lackadaisical. This is not much of a shock from Marek Zidlicky, who is always taking his time, but the others and even some forwards just seemed lost on the ice.
Peter DeBoer should be held accountable for this as well. Not once was he seen rallying his troops while they were getting shelled in the third period by the Oilers snipers. He should have been trying to get some fire under his players to not give up the four straight goals in the third.
With that said, the Devils head out to Vancouver to play the Canucks tomorrow night in Cory Schneider’s return to Vancouver for the first time since he was traded this summer. It will be an awesome game to watch and you should not miss it. The Devils will continue to search for that elusive first win of the season after falling to 0-1-2 tonight.
1st Star - Ryan Nugent-Hopkins
2nd Star - Damien Brunner
3rd Star - David Perron