Saturday, May 06, 2006

The Perfect Storm

The Result was something totally unexpected, from the lack of offence on the part of the New Jersey Devils to an amazing offensive outburst by the Carolina Hurricanes, one which set Martin Brodeur back on his heels and eventually drove him from the game.

Carolina poured on the offence on the way to a 6-0 crushing of the New Jersey Devils, not what one might have expected after watching the Carolina-Montreal series or the Rangers and Devils for that matter. Gone was the wild rushing of the Devils into the offensive zone, instead it was a game completely dominated by the Hurricanes.

They played smart in their own end of the rink and took the play to the Devils in their end, by the end of the afternoon; the Canes were ahead one game to none in the series and the Devils had lost for the first time since March 26th. It was a fifteen game losing streak that obviously had to come to an end one day, but surely not with the complete disaster that this game provided for the Devils and their fans.

Carolina fired 38 shots at the New Jersey net, most of them directed at Martin Brodeur who uncharacteristically allowed 6 in behind him. Though to be fair, he had little in the way of help as the Devils seemed to still be in sleep mode, not picking up their checks, nor clearing the defensive zone with any authority.

The play left their coach Lou Lamoriella to shake his head at the bench as the much vaunted Devils hockey system completely fell apart for game one. He’ll no doubt regroup and reinforce the methods that brought New Jersey this far, but as Montreal found out earlier once you let Carolina build up some momentum they can be a very hard team to beat.

With a noisy and enthusiastic RBC Centre crowd behind them, Game two is suddenly an all important game for the Devils to try and take back some of the energy that they had from the Rangers series a win is a must. Going down 2-0 will only serve to keep Carolina on a roll and that won’t be a good thing for the Devils.

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