The New Jersey Devils dropped another awful game and while it was not without its high points this team was a disaster on both ends of the ice. Once again, they let in the first goal within two minutes and a second in the first five. At this point, who knows what it will take to wake this team up early so they can stop falling behind. On the third goal, Severson looked afraid to take a hit and gave the puck away trying to go back to Seigenthaler. Take the hit and make the smart play. The team looked dead in the water because of this soft play and what can the goalie do when a guy gets such a great chance all alone a few feet in front of the net.
Late in the period Severson net a nice shot on the powerplay thanks to a great pass by Tatar who had an alright game. After this, the team looked fired up and almost had a fantastic chance on a 2 on 1 with Hughes and Zacha in which Zacha couldn’t make a five-foot pass. They did however manage to stick with it and Hughes went to the dirty area getting the Devils in the game.
Starting the second this team looked like they wanted to win and was embarrassed. They had the momentum and with early goals, by Nico Hischier and Ryan Graves, this team had all the momentum and could have run away with it. Of course, this was not the case and this team imploded.
They let in five straight goals and every one of these was an avoidable goal leading to a lot of questions. This team couldn’t stop any pass across the middle, clear anyone from the front of the net and neither goalie could make a save.
When it comes to player deployment I have no idea what the staff is thinking with random lines, playing time, and refusing to change goalies when it was not working than doing it anyway when the game is already over.
This team finally has the talent and lineup to succeed but the coaching is holding them back in a big way. It is time to replace assistants and maybe give Ruff one more shot at this but I am not convinced he is the solution. Either way, this team needs to turn it around right now before the playoffs are gone and they should be worried about how good the AHL coaches look right now.