Game 9: Rangers at Devils

2012-2013 Records: Devils (4-1-3), Rangers (4-4-0)

NYR Leading Scorer: Marian Gaborik (5-3-8)
NJD Leading Scorer: David Clarkson (5-4-9)

NYR Goaltender: Henrik Lundqvist (7 GP, 2.79 GAA, .904 SV%)
NJD Goaltender: Martin Broedeur (6 GP, 2.75 GAA, .899 SV%)

New York Rangers Tickets.

Rangers Lines:

Rick Nash-Brad Richards-Marian Gaborik
Carl Hagelin-Derek Stepan-Taylor Pyatt
Chris Kreider-J.T. Miller-Darroll Powe
Arron Asham-Jeff Halpern-Brian Boyle

Ryan McDonagh-Anton Stralman
Marc Staal-Michael Del Zotto
Stu Bickel-Matt Gilroy

Henrik Lundqvist

Probable Scratches/Injuries:  Mike Sauer (concussion), Dan Girardi (banged up), Steve Eminger (healthy), Ryan Callahan (shoulder)

Preview: The Devils are an interesting team. They always lose someone important to their club, their goalie is 40, but yet they always find a way to win. This year is no different at 4-1-3, although that’s really just the same 4-4 that the Rangers are at. This offseason, the Devils lost Zach Parise and pretty much their entire coaching staff, but they still keep chugging along.

The Devils are also an interesting team because of the way they play. Gone are the days of the Devils playing the neutral zone trap for an entire game. The Devils use two separate forechecking systems. In the early going –and as we saw last year in the playoffs– the Devils play a 2-1-2 forecheck, the same system that the Rangers play. This strategy is designed to create turnovers from sending two forecheckers deep and having a roamer around the high slot to capitalize on bad passes.

Once the Devils get a lead, they switch forechecking strategies, much like the Flyers. However, unlike the Flyers –who switch to a 2-3 LW lock– the Devils switch to a 1-2-2 hybrid trap. This strategy is designed to disrupt offensive breakouts and clog up the neutral zone.

The similarities continue in their own end as well. The Devils –much like the Rangers– play a shot-blocking collapsing box style. However, unlike the Rangers, the Devils’ wingers have the freedom to attack the point if the matchup is right (i.e.: When a slow-footed defenseman is out on the ice).

In the end, the Devils are a lot like the Rangers nowadays. The only real difference is the Rangers do not alter their strategy based on the score or the clock. They both will rely on their big names (Kovalchuk, Zajac, Clarkson, Henrique, Elias) to light the lamp, and use their depth to stifle the opposition. Where the Devils are exploitable is on the blue line. They have a solid top-four, but that bottom pairing leaves a lot to be desired.

Sound familiar? It should.

Fun Fact: Random people ask to borrow your phone in Newark.

Crazy Thought: Still hoping for a powerplay goal.

Opposition Blog: In Lou We Trust

9 Responses to “Game 9: Rangers at Devils”

  1. VinceR says:

    Crap, Girardi not in and no news, but he said he was fine this morning…bottom D pair Bickel/Gilroy…ugh.

  2. Furls says:

    I may have to eat my words about Miller. It’s only the end of the first, but man, did he look good on the pp! Why is it that Stepan looks like the tentative youngster, and Miller looks like the creative playmaker???

    • Dave says:

      That PP shift looked very good. They moved the puck very well. Didn’t score though.

  3. Bloomer says:

    That first line of Gabs, Richards and Nash needs to be split up. They suck.

    • Dave says:

      Not quite sure “They suck” is the appropriate phrase to use there regarding those three.

  4. Bloomer says:

    Are you kidding me Dave? 19 year old Miller is tutoring the Superstars on how to work a PP!~

  5. Joestradamus says:

    They need to really do something with the PP. It is too stagnant and the lack of player movement makes it so easy to defend. They had 12 minutes on the PP which is 1/4 of the game and got nothing going on it. The only time they actually get a PP goal is when things break down and they are out of formation. Sullivan should not be the PP coach anymore because the last few years have been pitiful…

  6. rickyrants13 says:

    Miller looks good, Ive said it all along the first line can not be stacked with nothing else to rely on. Stepans line came back down to earth very fast. The other teams goalie stood on his head tonite once again.

    Most of the kids played better then the vets. Nash is either trying to hard or he is snake bitten. The Rangers are gonna have to find a way and very fast to make lines where players match up well together. A def first banger with a playmaker and a finnisher on the same line for starters