Mark Recchi must help the New Jersey Devils improve their power play.
The New Jersey Devils have had some pretty ugly power play numbers over the past couple of seasons. They have a lot of offensively gifted players on the squad but they need a creative mind to help them put the talent together. Mark Recchi was hired to be that guy. Serving as Lindy Ruff‘s assistant coach, he will be the guy running the power play going forward. They ranked 21st last season as a man-advantage unit so hopefully, they are able to improve that number drastically.
When he was the guy running the power play with the Pittsburgh Penguins, they had a lot of success. Of course, with players like Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, and Kris Letang there, it is to be expected but you need a good power play strategy to take advantage of all that talent. The Devils have the talent trying to put it all together in players like Nico Hischier and Jack Hughes.
There are four guys that the Devils can realistically use as the quarterback of the powerplay in P.K. Subban, Will Butcher, Damon Severson, and Ty Smith. Now, there are only two units so you never know who emerges in a system like this. If you had to make an educated guess, P.K. Subban and Damon Severson feel like the likely winners of roles like that for now.
Wherever Mark Recchi goes, either as a player or coach, success follows. He is a three-time Stanley Cup Champion as a player and added his name to the trophy two more times as a developmental coach for the Pittsburgh Penguins. He knows how to help guys take their talent and make use out of it. The Devils were in desperate need of a guy like that, and Recchi seems to be capable of being that guy.
The Devils don’t have someone capable of scoring 50 power-play points like Taylor Hall anymore, but they do have a couple of guys who have the potential to be that productive eventually. If Mark Recchi was smart, he would be getting creative right now as to how he can get the most out of Hughes and his elite passing ability. If the Devils are going to start winning with regularity, they need some of these offensive-minded players to produce. The power play is a great place to start.