New Jersey Devils: Miles Wood Trying To Play Outside His Role

Miles Wood blames himself for the New Jersey Devils loss to the Calgary Flames. This shows he’s trying to do more than is expected of him.

The New Jersey Devils lost in the shootout to the Calgary Flames on Sunday night. It seems like they were lucky to even come out with a point. During that game, Miles Wood had a huge chance late when he was given a penalty shot.

His penalty shot attempt was, how do we say this lightly, bad. It wasn’t a good attempt by Wood.

Wood’s biggest quality is his speed. It’s what gets him penalty shot attempts at all. His speed gives other teams fits multiple times a game. He can skate past a defense with ease. He has multiple big chances seemingly every single game. For some reason, he tried to use his hands on his penalty shot and missed the net entirely.

After the game, Wood blamed himself for the loss.

Sure, on paper if Wood hits that shot the game theoretically doesn’t go to over time. However, this isn’t that easy.

The Devils left goalie Keith Kinkaid out to dry way too many times last night. He was forced to stop multiple break aways, including his own penalty shot from Micheal Ferland. Kinkaid kept the Devils in the game enough to get it to overtime.

Wood blaming himself for his one mistake shows he putting too much pressure on himself. His game-breaking ability is what puts him on the ice on a nightly basis. He’s more Ted Ginn than Julian Edelman. The team doesn’t expect Wood to play perfectly on every shift. As long as he avoid huge mistakes on both ends, that ability will keep him in the lineup.

Wood was kept out of the opening night lineup, and he clearly wasn’t happy about it. When he was put back into the lineup, he was playing with a fire we expect to see from the young player. Since then, he’s fallen back to the pack a little bit.

Wood hasn’t scored in eight games. That isn’t for lack of effort. His five shots against the Edmonton Oilers showed he still has trust in his shot. In the up-and-down game the Devils have been playing lately, he’s a true asset. A goal will probably help him with his confidence. He just needs to play his game. If he stays in his lane, he will stay in the lineup. If he tries to do more than is expected of him, he comes off worse.

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