Archives for December 2007

Oh this should be FUN again… But with an 8-4-1 month isn’t bad for a team that used to just SUCK in December all the time, and there was a lot to like about the way this season has panned out for the Devils, as a subtle rebuild is actually working out as this team slowly goes from a defense first team of hall of famers to more a current NHL style of offense-first, and actually a fun, but mildly frustrating team to watch!!!

Forwards:
Patrik Elias:

Played his best game of the year and didn’t score and got hurt too… that kinda summizes Patrik to this point doesn’t it?? The overly talented enigma, plays and plays hard every night… maybe he’s playing too hard, maybe it’s the line shuffling.. I don’t know what it is.. but 5 of his 8 goals ARE winning goals, so when he does put it out it COUNTS (uh-oh he’s using the stat book to base the month of a goal scorer.. must be football season!) but hot damn it’s not that he doesn’t bust his nuts every night…took losing his A a bit personally and maybe it’s kicked his ass in gear… or he’s like most hockey fans and doesn’t take the season too serious until the football season ends (it’s such a damn long season that if you go crazy about games in October and November you’ll be getting Vicodin IV’ed in through your strait jacket come April!)… he was a bit better this month though, the move to center helped him have more talent around him if not his game… Grade B-

Travis Zajac:
Oh where have you gone oh Travis Zajac…. he’s on the Parise line and he’s STILL not producing…it’s not a good thing for this team… when you’re top offensive center is John Madden LOOK out…one goal and one assist is NOT going to cut it for what should be our top or even second center he has to bust out of the sophomore jinx sooner or later (I think we all also saw Parise’s jump from year one to year two and the good first month made us think he was gonna do the same!).. needs to get his ass in GEAR… Grade D+

Brian Gionta:
8 points in 13 games is eh (and for the people who say I spend too much time on stats, please GO LOOK at how few goals a game this team scores, and I know most of this is because our defense BLOWS and has NO transition game for the forwards), but his game also got a bit better when he got with Elias and Zubris (well for the five minutes a game the coach allows it)…no power play goals, and when you’re the teams top pp guy, and the team can’t bribe a hooker to buy a power play goal… that’s a problem too… again I aim a lot of the team’s problems at the defense, but the forwards need to take heat too…Grade B-

Zach Parise:
A little less consistent this month, but how could he NOT be …. He had an AMAZING November, and the whole team took a bit of a step back in the goal scoring department this month… can’t blame Zach for it though, he’s still the most dangerous player on this team and it’s not even close! (hell the whole team only scored 27 goals in the MONTH, that’s pretty brutal and scary bad too)… not his fault one bit though… Grade A-

Sergei Brylin:
Got more ice time this month and seems better fitted as the fill-in for Pando role then what he was trying to do on the 4th line (the way this team is set up now the 4th line needs to MASH BRAINS and that’s not Sergei’s game).. the 7 goal pace for the season is still not all that good, but go figure he has his best game of the season the day after I blast him and say it’s over… so is it time to blast him and say it’s over? I dunno… but it’s still pretty close and he’s gonna be back in the same “what the Farooq do we do with him” role when Pandolfo comes back…. Grade C

Dainius Zubrus:
I swear I could say this about the whole team, but like so played better basic hockey all month long… was a factor with and without the puck… but this damned team seems cursed for offense now, no one stands out on this damn team except Parise and they all seem to score in the same weird little bunches…I think he’s still been a good addition to the team at least… Grade C+

Jamie Langenbrunner:
You KNEW he was gonna slow down with the point frenzy after coming back.. and much like the rest of the team was spotty at best (it’s scary how when you use the reference tool of the game log to see a breakdown and to remind you a little of who did what and when, and to see how many guys up top went 3-5 games with no points… this team can’t be having that)… even re-uniting Parise/Zajac and Langenbrunner for last year’s magic doesn’t seem to be helping right now, seriously this team needs a puck moving D-Man NOT named Schneider and NOW… but Jamie was OKAY.. not great… not BAD on the month… so I guess that kinda spells out… Grade B-

Jay Pandolfo:
It’s actually frightening to the point of stopping people from sleeping the fact that the Devils actually miss his OFFENSE now… I’m really scared by that.. and I mean dark alley in Harlem kinda scared while wearing a white sheet….but it’s fitting that his injury was in true Pandolf-ian fashion and now he’s sorely missed on this team… Grade INCOMPLETE

John Madden:
6 goals leads the team for the month, and he’s really the #1 and most consistent do any and everything center we’ve got now, and I still wonder if that’s the best thing for this team (no knock on Madden of course) .. has found his shot, offense and even the net under the Sutter system and may be the best beneficiary of said system.. there was a lot to complain about in this month (which is crazy cause this team IS in first place and all)… but not much to complain about from Number 11… Grade A

Aaron Asham:
I’d call him AA, but that insults Arn Anderson on SO MANY LEVELS it’s not even funny… but each time I see him on the ice I keep thinking… “Whatever” and really his ice time (which tells you what the coaches think of him) and his stats would call “whatever” a damned improvement… he’s been disappointing this year… and his botch on the penalty shot kinda tells you all you need to know about him this season…. So what’s the Grade Equivalent of “whatever”… oh yeah… Grade C-

Mike Rupp:
Everytime I see his name I become Agent Smith From the 3rd Matrix movie.. WHY… WHY…. WHY DO YOU PERSIST MISTER RUPP!!! Played 5 games too many this month and to hear me scream I DID NOT TRAVEL 3500 MILES and 5 HOURS BY PLANE AND ANOTHER THREE BY CAR TO SEE YOU SUCK! Just sums up his whole time as a Devil this time around… I can’t wait till Cam comes back so you can swim in a pool of AIDS until it kills you!!! Grade F

David Clarkson:
The most fun and energetic player to watch all month long… he really is Randy McKay with a little spunk and I love seeing this kid on the ice… he’s learning what it’s like to be a stand in front pain in the ass (the flag incident in practice last week shows you they know what they need to teach this kid to move up to the next level still) and even though he’s not burying the chances like he will in the future.. any guy who goes out and punches Bill Guerin in the face gets a higher grade by me!!! He’s Sean Avery… WITH class!! Grade B+

Rod Pelley:
With John Madden being counted on for more offense, he’s being counted on for more defense and has stepped into the role pretty danged good! Still kills penalties too and the coaches are finding better ways to use him each month… may never be a 20 minute… or goal.. guy… but he’s a nice 4th liner and defense-only guy who will get lucky and add some points! Grade B-

Defense:
Colin White:

Had a ROUGH night in Vancouver (he wasn’t the only one, I swear if I meet one more idiot Canuck fan who wants to cancel Marty’s 3 rings after one bad night I may go Chris Benoit on someone… is it still too early to make that reference?), but aside of that he is what he is.. I’d like to see him on the ice a little more (he’s doing about 17 a game … we need that up to 20-some, but the 7-D system is affecting that a bit)… and isn’t going to overwhelm you in any way, but plays good and hard every night… maybe eases up a little to avoid dumb penalties, but I’m sure the eye injury has tamed his aggression also… Grade B+

Paul Martin:
Talking of playing 20 plus minutes a night… here’s your guy… getting better and more relied upon as the season goes on (also the responsibility of the A shows the faith the team has in him)..he’s the do everything guy on this team… wish he was better at breakout passes but is also showing signs of being ready to jump into the play at good times, and is the one guy I think can improve and add more offense to this team from the blueline… hopefully that too comes as the season moves on… another good month for our by-defacto top defender! Grade A-

Johnny Oduya:
Played good on my birthday (see if you guys weren’t such asses to him he’d play good on YOUR birthday too.. even the smartass who’s gonna say well I was born in August… well just for you he’s gonna score a hat trick in a roller hockey game in Newark JUST FOR YOU!!!).. didn’t make the major mistake this month (which too is a good sign), and when played in the 7-D rotation wasn’t being overplayed or asked to do stuff he can’t… has a decent shot… may see some pp time, hell it can’t be any WORSE can it? It’s not even liking him to piss you guys off anymore… he’s been pretty solid!! Grade B-

Andy Greene:
Hot damn he made some nice keeps of the blueline on the power play in the Buffalo game… this kid has the skills and the mobility and he makes good plays… still kinda young and needs to be one of the guys to produce from the defense corps (NO points in the month on a team DESPERATE for a pp guy and transition type defender ala Rafalski is not gonna get it done)..I just wish he were more a part of the answer as opposed to part of the “what the hell is up with the defense” question… they’ve been a lot better on defense, but they need to be like the old days of good defense breaking out good OFFENSE too…. Grade C+

Sheldon Brookbank:
4 assists and 4 fights in the same month… it’s an improvement! Ice time is getting less and less each game though… and doesn’t seem to do anything all that much better then any of the other D in our shuffle right now, get the feeling him and Oduya might be shipping in and out of the line when Rachunek comes back…not really his fault, but hey then again… if Elias and Pando are still out… DRESS EIGHT D… playing 2 D on the wings of the 4th line… still better then one Rupp and no clue!!! Grade C-

Mike Mottau:
Good lord he’s our pp quarterback…. And using that word with him brings back more thoughts of Chad Suckinson and Vinny Testaverde, then Al MacInnis or even Brian Rafalski… again it’s not hating the guy, and I don’t… hell his goal against Buffalo was the first damn goal I saw in person since flipping D-Day! But I really worry if this is the best offensive defenseman we got, but he’s still been a nice steady surprise this year… even if he’s still in over his head a little bit… Grade B-

Vitaly Vishnevski:
Each month I keep wondering why we don’t see more of him every night, he’s ok with the puck… he doesn’t line up and kill people with hits as much as we’d like… but it just seems the coaches don’t love him for some odd reason, he’s not the defensive beast we do need back there and no he doesn’t bring the puck up… or out without chipping.. but he does put the fear of the MONSTER hit into people, and it’s something no one else really does in the back pairings….wonder if he will ever win the staff over enough to jump him to a top level of minutes… Grade C+ (still need MORE of him)

Karel Rachunek:
He’s still “eh” to me… or dare I say… “whatever”.. got hurt and it was just when I was starting to pay attention to him more, I suppose he’s still ok, but he’s like a lot of these guys in the same as what we got but just older, I don’t really think he’s the answer or the cure to what Devil problems there are when they come back…. Grade C+

Goalies:
Martin Brodeur:

Playing too damned much again (though the schedule was spaced out nicely with the Western Canada trip and all to make travel time a must) but it’s hard to complain with the results (though it was still a joke he was allowed to embarrass himself and put me through more hell in Vancouver where he couldn’t stop a beach ball or get me off the burger line)… wasn’t all too good in the Islander game and again maybe should not have played.. but unless we see 3 in 4 nights… or it’s February, Marty’s gonna be out there burning himself out all over again! Grade B+ (if you had flown all the way out to Vancouver to see that mess you’d have failed him… and oh yeah… it was your 35th Birthday Present too… you’d hold a grudge!)

Kevin Weekes:
Holy shit he actually PLAYED in December?? I swear it’s racism keeping the black man down and all!!! He wasn’t bad in his LONE game of the month, but really needs maybe 2-3 starts a month to be fairly rated… typical Devils backup goalie…. INCOMPLETE

Coaching Staff:
One by one he is fixing the problems on this team…. The defense is playing better… penalty kill is improved… I even love how he handled the Asham situation… the only big black eye on the team now is the 0-8 with the Rangers and Islanders but that too HAS to come around, I really like the changes and adapting this team is doing and making as they try to become a more complete team throughout the season, and even as much as I am not a fan so far of the result… letting kids like Mottau take fire in the shit on the power play is the right move for this team now! Now only if someone could break Mike Rupp’s leg… or better.. send him back to Albany! (I know it’s not our farm team anymore that’s the POINT!) Grade B+

Average Rating: 4.7 out of 5 based on 204 user reviews.

http://www.2manadvantage.com/2007/12/31/devils-month-in-review-december-2007/

Well boys and girls, we have a winner for the 2 Man Advantage Devils ticket giveaway!

Out of 224 entries, the boys and I have randomly selected one winner. Aand that winner is…

…wait for it…

…wait for it!

THE WINNER IS:
Winner!

Mr. Lepore will receive two tickets to an upcoming New Jersey Devils home game. How exciting!

Thanks to everyone who entered, and congrats to Steve! Keep with 2 Man Advantage for more awesomeness, we surely have more amazing tricks up our sleeves. Oh yeah.

Average Rating: 4.9 out of 5 based on 152 user reviews.

http://www.2manadvantage.com/2007/12/30/omg-ticket-contest-winner2/

It’s been quite an eventful year here at 2 Man Advantage. We made friends. We pissed people off. We plugged the site. We made others love us lots. We plugged the site. We were on the radio. We plugged the site. We had contests.

Oh, and we totally plugged the site.

Alas, how amazingly appropriate and awesomely fun would it be to take a look back at the past 12 months round these parts?

JANUARY

Joe first introduced us to his man-crush on Anze Kopitar. I, on the other hand, had begun to strangely fall in love with Brad Lukowich.

RANT! made its first appearance in January, ‘cuz I was apparently quite angered about something-or-other. I don’t remember, even after looking back at it. Weird.

Zach Parise was declared better than Evgeni Malkin.

Darius Kasparaitis, on the other hand, was declared awful. So sad.

We closed out January by introducing Rod Pelley to the NHL. I told him not to suck. He kind of did at first. Glad to see things are on the up and up now though.

FEBRUARY

I guess I got a little lazy. I posted this picture twice in a very short time span. There was good reason though. Brad Lukowich had officially completed his 180, going from the crap-tastic player he was in 2006 to severely awesome. At least we officially coined the nickname “Rad Brad Lukowich.” It so stuck.

I RANT!’ed again.

The NY Post pissed Joe off. So did the Devils. Joe was an angry individual ’round this time. He sees someone for it now.

Just kidding.

Sean Avery became public enemy numbero uno when he attacked Marty Brodeur, which prompted these classic pictures (1) and (2) .

Cam Janssen actually scored a goal. I actually spelled his first name wrong. I blame the excitement.

We had a blast covering the Trade Deadline Day. Joe showed his appreciation with a foam finger.

MARCH

The Devils began to suck a little bit in March.

I decided that I really did not like Marc-Andre Fleury’s pads.

Chris Simon decided that Ryan Hollweg’s head needed to be decapitated. Silly Islanders.

The Devils continued to suck just a bit more. I didn’t find the suck-fest amusing by any stretch.

For some reason, I was happy that Patrik Elias was making a return to the lineup. Have I learned my lesson?

Probably not.

The suck-fest relented and the Devils made the playoffs.

APRIL

Super Jay made his first appearance at 2MA.

Claude Julien, thankfully, was canned.

Marty set a record.

This picture also made its first appearance. Might be the most relevant picture. Ever. Clearly, I predict the future, eh?

The Devils were to face the Tampa Bay Lightning in the first round of the playoffs. I made lots of thunder jokes. They were not well received.

We started getting serious about live-caps.

Black ‘n Red eliminated the Bolts. Joe and I were too drunk to update the site. Hello AA!

Pretty much summed up the second round of the playoffs right here.

BLOG WAR!!

The Score started using our pictures. I was amazed.

The boys pretty much handed the series to the Senators.

MAY

Marty Brodeur and Super Jay Pandolfo were both nominated for some awards.

Patrik Elias continued to piss me off.

The Senators officially eliminated the Devils. Was anyone really surprised?

Joe peaced out. Nice repost of foam finger though.

I had a lot of questions.

Darren came on board as Joe’s replacement. I use that term loosely. Mr. Bechtel could never be replaced.

I made a couple wish lists. None of it came true.

Penguins fans got mad at me for saying I was better than Sidney Crosby. Me thinks Pens fans take things too seriously.

JUNE

Darren was happy Scott Niedermayer won another Cup. I secretly hated the Ducks all summer long.

Marty won a Vezina. Jay did not win his Selke. Blasphemy.

Scott Stevens made the Hall of Fame.

We asked where everyone thought Scott Gomez would wind up.

JULY

I live-capped free agency. We lost Brian Rafalski and Scott Gomez in one shot, more or less. I don’t know why I didn’t make individual posts about each signing. Weird.

Louie Lams signed Karel Rachunek, Dainius Zubrus, and Kevin Weekes. The signing of Vitaly Vishnevski followed a bit later on.

I was absolutely devastated when Brad Lukowich signed with the Tampa Bay Lightning. Even more so when the Toronto Maple Leafs signed Scott Clemmensen.

Souraygate ’07 went down.

Black ‘n Red finally found a new head coach!

Joe came back to 2MA. We also added Josh and Tony to make the name 2 Man Advantage completely irrelevant.

AUGUST

August was pretty dead. Only six entries, one remotely newsworthy, aside from Zach Parise being signed long-term to the Devils. At least we were totally successful in making 2MA fans everywhere completely uncomfortable with this.

SEPTEMBER

Max McNab passed away.

Jersey Jim Dowd completely f’ed the organization over by signing with the Flyers. Okay, he didn’t eff the organization over. We were just sad that he wouldn’t be the new PR guy.

I made a pretty picture.

Elias was stripped of his captaincy. I was happy.

A lot of players got hurt.

Johnny Oduya became John Oduya. Josh was pretty upset about this.

I got to be on the radio. I totally called the Langs-for-Captain deal.

OCTOBER

We did a fantastic season preview: (1) and (2) .

The season finally started. The Devils lost.

Laser Beam Weekes made its first of many appearances.

The (lack of) defense saddened me.

This awesome picture still makes me giggle.

How many levels of truth do we have here?

The sticker contest was conceived.

It’s like poetry.

Joe tried to calm the readers by putting the fear of God in them.

I became a bit emotional writing a commentary about the opening of the Prudential Center. I’m a female. We have lots of hormones.

The Devils lost the arena opener.

NOVEMBER

Joe used an inside joke when apologizing for the lack of live-cap. There are really only two other people on this planet who understand the joke other than us.

Johnny Oduya theme night, right here.

Sean Avery should just have his jaw wired shut.

Darren broke up with us. He’s in a new relationship with NJ.com.

Josh had enough.

Tony went MIA.

We amused ourselves during such trying times by captioning pictures.

The Zubbie Counter officially started.

Joe also had enough.

I continued to amuse myself with silly pictures.

but even I had enough too.

Things started to look up. Marty even reached another milestone.

We gained a contributer!

Trenton Devils emergency backup goaltender John Zdunkiewicz graced us with an interview.

Montreal was renamed Martreal.

DECEMBER

Our new contributer sure caused an uproar with his monthly review of the team.

The Devils were seriously kicking butt.

I had a sleeping problem.

Brendan Shanahan annoyed us.

Steve officially hopped on board as a full time 2MA writer.

Mark Everson inspired me to write a tribute. Iggy, friend of 2MA, really enjoyed the ode.

2MA invaded MSG.

Crack is whack.

$1 hot dogs were not worth watching the Devils get obliterated by the Phoenix Coyotes.

Josh made it to radio! He announced this.

Aaaand finally, I am partly to blame for Jamie Lynn Spears’ pregnancy.

______

THAT’S IT FOLKS! The 2MA Crew will be coming back with a year-end round table to discuss the happenings of this past year more in depth on December 30th, where we will also be announcing the winner of the ticket contest. Enjoy these next few days, we’ll be back shortly after some much-needed R and R!

And as always, Joe, Josh, Steve, and myself would like to express our thanks to each and every reader of the site. Happy holidays everyone!

Average Rating: 4.7 out of 5 based on 286 user reviews.

http://www.2manadvantage.com/2007/12/22/a-look-back-at-2007-2ma-style/

Part two of the three-game pre-Christmas Canadian road swing is upon us, and the Devils drop into Edmonton to take on the Oilers. Now if this seems a little weird to you, there’s perfectly good reason: This will be the Devils first visit to Rexall Place in SIX years. In fact, the boys in Black and Red haven’t lost in Edmonton since Halloween, 1995! That’d surely be a good sign, if not for the small sample size.

Fresh off the 5-0 drubbing in Van City on Tuesday night, the Devils hit the ice looking to stave off being shut out a record eight times in one season – and the ball hasn’t even dropped on the ’07 portion of the season yet.

The Oilers seem to be in the same boat as the Devs though (well, not the SAME exact shutout-heavy boat, but at least a low-powered-offense boat of similar stature), potting a scant two goals in the last two games. The Oil recently set an NHL record, appearing in their fourth consecutive shootout, going 3-0-1 over the course of the four games. The Oilers have picked up points in five consecutive games and are 6-2-2 in their last 10.

The key to this game for the Devils (besides putting pucks in nets) will be the power play, where Edmonton ranks dead last with a 12.4% success rate. Seeing as the Devs seem to enjoy the friendly confines of the sin bin of late, clamping down on the PK is a must tonight.

The Oiler to watch tonight would be Mr. Shawn Horcoff, the team leader with 16 goals and 18 assists, and therefore also the team leader with 34 points (see, I can do math after all!). Mathieu Garon looks to get the nod in net, as Dwayne Roloson remains sidelined with the flu for the Oilers.

In net on the visitors side of the ice, I would naturally LIKE to see Kevin Weekes get the nod – Marty had a bad night in Vancouver and could probably use some rest. If you give him off on Sunday in Calgary, then he goes well over a week without any game action. But, this is Marty we’re talking about here, and I’m sure he’ll probably be in net both tonight and in Calgary.

Tonight’s game starts at 9 PM, but it’s a Friday night, so where do you have to be? Pop on a pot of coffee and witness the rarity that is a Devils @ Edmonton game!

Average Rating: 4.9 out of 5 based on 262 user reviews.

http://www.2manadvantage.com/2007/12/21/western-canada-road-trip-take-2/

2 MAN ADVANTAGE’S TIP OF THE DAY #10:

Don’t post a picture making fun of Britney Spears and her baby-making-skills on a hockey website.

Like this:

‘cuz, well, apparently when do you that, it causes 16 year olds to become pregnant the next day, like this:

Spears family, we apologize.

Do it!

Average Rating: 4.7 out of 5 based on 221 user reviews.

http://www.2manadvantage.com/2007/12/19/tip-of-the-day-10/

Wow.

WE'RE MAD AT YOU,  VANCOUVER!I don’t think any of us were quite expecting that. The close up of Brent Sutter mumbling to himself constantly shown in the latter stages of last night’s 5-0 whipping at the hands of our Vancouver counterparts said it all. Blame it on the long flight or the bad bounces if you want, but sometime during the second period our boys just quit.

At the risk of sounding alarmist, I’m worried. Never have I felt as uneasy when a team I supported was in first place. Well there was the Mets sometime in September, but that’s a whole different train wreck.

I’m dealing with that. My therapist says I’m making progress. Things are good.

But these Devils are an enigma. We sit atop a division that’s likely the most competitive in the league, yet we’ve been shut out in 20 percent of our games. We’ve dominated plenty of playoff-caliber teams, but have been trampled by the league’s worst. On several occasions this fall, I’ve sat before my TV and proclaimed both that these Devils are unstoppable and that they need to be dismantled to start anew, sometimes in the same game.

And since when has taking bench minors during power plays become en vogue?! You’re already on a power play! So what if you didn’t get a call!

Holy rehab Batman!Serenity now.

I just can’t figure it out.

You can analyze their game top to bottom, point out strengths and flaws until the cows come home, but you’ll just end up making yourself crazier than Amy Winehouse. At times they look as though they’re forging new frontiers in science with the chemistry they have. But in games like last night’s and the drumming we took from Phoenix last weekend, they look like they haven’t met.

“Patrik, Meet Zach and Brian. Zach, Brian, meet Patrik.”
“You guys like hockey too? Rad!”

It just seems like some days the boys come to play and some days they don’t. I’m sure the Devils are currently working through their 345th sprint drill, so hopefully that gives Scowlin’ Sutter some time to figure out what the eff happens to his team between these night and day performances.

Because come playoff time if we’ve been shut out 17 times like we’re on pace to be, we won’t last. Hell, with a stat like that, we might not even make it. And you know what? We wouldn’t deserve to.


Average Rating: 4.7 out of 5 based on 234 user reviews.

http://www.2manadvantage.com/2007/12/19/commentranty-uh-what-the-hell-was-that/

The Western Canada road trip is upon us!

Hooray!I really can’t put my finger on one thing about this road trip, but there’s just something to it that really gets me amped. The Western Canada swing is always my favorite time of the season. Unfortunately, this early Christmas present has become somewhat of an anomaly lately, no thanks to the lovely scheduling format that will hopefully undergo more reconstruction than the left side of Joan Rivers’ face.

The Devils next three games will be in the cities of Vancouver, Edmonton, and Calgary; respectively.

The first stop on the trip is Vancouver — The Brodeur/Luongo cage match. The one single game that I have been looking forward to more than any on the 2007-08 schedule, or any schedule in the last five years for that matter. If you have been paying attention, you already know I have an avid love for the Canucks (Vancity aside, my heart is Black ‘n Red). Regardless of my favoritism, this match up is going to (hopefully) be one to remember. Back in our 2MA Season Preview (link opens in new window), I notched this game as my “Most Anticipated Game of 2007-08.”

Although it may be somewhat tainted as Vancouver will be without Kevin Bieksa and Brendan Morrison for the affair, I stand by it, and my prediction that the New Jersey Devils will come away victors via the shootout (3-2, book it!(?))

DYFS FTW!Another awesome trait this game has to offer — if you look at the Conference Standings, you’ll notice that both the Devils and Canucks’ records are nearly identical, right down to the GF/GA stat. I firmly believe that they are the most evenly matched teams in the NHL right now, and the mere fact that they know as much about each other as Britney Spears knows about good parenting skills, is simply captivating. I fully expect this to be an awesome game, and will most certainly be crushed if it doesn’t deliver. Another note of interest regarding the Devils trip to Vancouver: the Canucks are a rare Achilles for Martin Brodeur – one of the only teams he holds a losing record against.

From Vancouver, the Devils will pay their first visit to the Edmonton Oilers in nearly six years. The Devils last faced off with the 2006 Stanley Cup Finalists in 2005-2006, winning the contest 2-1 thanks to Brian Gionta’s shootout heroics.

Maybe?Black ‘n Red will close out the swing on Sunday when they take to the ice in Calgary for the first time since 2003. Another game that promises to provide something special for hockey fans across the globe, as the Devils will square off against Dion Phaneuf, whom many claim to be the Scott Stevens of the “new” NHL. We’ll see just exactly how much of the hype Dion will live up to in the coming days.

So, my fellow hockey fans, there is nothing more to do but sit back and enjoy the coming week of games. The Western Canada road trip doesn’t happen often, but when it does, it should be enjoyed.

Here’s hoping for a week full of slap shots, hard hits, heart-stopping saves, and above all else – Devils victories!

Enjoy!

Average Rating: 4.4 out of 5 based on 282 user reviews.

http://www.2manadvantage.com/2007/12/18/oh-western-canada/

You heard right — we’re giving away two tickets to an upcoming Devils game!

While this site has been around since October of 2006, we really feel like last December was when we truly hit our stride. The boys and I just wanted to say thanks to all the readers of this site, whether you laughed at one of our silly jokes, posted a comment yelling at something we wrote, or simply logged on the site to see what the heck this place even is about over the past year.

In short, we love the 2MA Crew, and we wanted to show our appreciation!

FREE STUFF!HERE’S WHAT YOU GOTTA DO:

Send us an e-mail. Simple as that. You don’t need to tell us how much you love us (though, it’s always nice to inflate our egos), you don’t need to write why you deserve the tickets more than anyone else (though, it might help our decision…just kidding.) E-mail us, and we’ll randomly pick one reader who will receive two center ice tickets to an upcoming New Jersey Devils home game.

We will announce the winner on December 30th, so get e-mailin’ now!

Average Rating: 5 out of 5 based on 236 user reviews.

http://www.2manadvantage.com/2007/12/16/big-announcement-4/

Check out NY Hockey Talk tonight at 9 PM ET where our very own Josh Burnett will be making a guest appearance!

OH, BY THE WAY, JOSH WILL BE MAKING ANNOUNCEMENT #4 TONIGHT ON THE SHOW, SO YOU BETTER TUNE IN TO FIND OUT WHAT IT IS!!!

Average Rating: 4.6 out of 5 based on 163 user reviews.

http://www.2manadvantage.com/2007/12/16/2ma-on-the-radio/

7:28 PM ET: And that’s the game! Devils win 4-2. That’s a freakin’ hockey game. The Devils get a great shot of energy as they head into their West Coast trip. Hope you enjoyed my inaugural live-cap. Thanks for tuning in, goodnight!

Hee.  hee.7:27 PM ET: Langenbrunner blasts it home to put an exclamation point on the game. 4-2 New Jersey.

7:25 PM ET: Flyers goalie pulled. Parise barely misses a shot on the open net. Time out Flyers.

7:23 PM ET: What a game. We’re reaching a fever pitch here as the game crawls into its final two minutes. Great action all around.

7:21 PM ET: P.S. Mike Mottau is awesome.

7:20 PM ET: Fast action on both sides as we enter the final five minutes of the third. Both goalies holding their ground.

7:18 PM ET: Vishnevski takes out Kapenen with a wicked hit and Doc Emerick comes up with the best off-the-cuff nickname ever. The freight train from the Ukraine baby!

7:16 PM ET: Gio takes advantage of a bad bounce and breaks in for a chance, but the shot is grabbed by Nittymaki. After a short break, it looks like the Devils have their heads back in the game.

7:12 PM ET: The Flyers are energized now but the Devils manage to fight off a strong PP effort.

7:08 PM ET: Brylin takes a bad penalty and the Flyers are back on the PP. Let’s not unravel here, boys.

7:05 PM ET: Briere makes up for his flaccid penalty shot effort by firing one home on the powerplay. Boo. 3-2 Devils.

7:03 PM ET: Flyers now on the PP after Rachunek gets a little angry behind the net and picks up a minor. Clarkson, meanwhile, is seen icing his hand in the penalty box. Ah, the swollen digits of victory.

7:01 PM ET: Marty makes a great save on Upshall after he breaks in on a 2-on-1. Chico uses this as an opportunity to talk about Brodeur eventually retiring. Way to be a buzzkill, man.

6:59 PM ET: And quicker than you can say ‘holding, ’ Knuble picks up a penalty and we’ve got another Devs powerplay!

6:57 PM ET: Clarkson scraps with Jason Smith in a sequel of a fight earlier this season as the PP comes to an end. Smith got some shots in but Clarkson takes him down in the end. Edge: Clarkson

6:55 PM ET: And we’re back. Devils PP to start.

Where oh where could he be?6:47 PM ET: After conferring with the replay room in Toronto we’re going to give the edge to Cote on that first period scrap. Rupp got clocked in the jaw just before they went down and has been noticeably absent since. Let’s hope he’s alright.

6:37 PM ET: Whew, what a period! Devils up 3-1! I use lots of exclamation points! Excitement!!!

6:35 PM ET: Devils kill the Flyers powerplay with ease and draw an interference penalty as the period comes to a close. Devils powerplay will start the third.

Teh Lame.6:33 PM ET: Flyers catch a BIG break and are on the PP due to Scottie Upshall’s convincing performance, drawing a crap hook off of Zubrus. The Gionta goal is called off.

6:32 PM ET: Gionta scores after a flurry, but it may be called back. The refs are discussing in the corner.

6:26 PM ET: Zajac to Parise to Asham and it’s a goal! 3-1 New Jersey. Beautiful passing play. The Devils are fired up as the second period nears its end.

6:25 PM ET: Lost in the madness that has been the second period is the great play of Brodeur, who has been standing on his head when he’s had to.

6:22 PM ET: The Flyers look lost as the Devils continue to smother them. Pelley with a great chance that gets stopped by Nittymaki.

The latest addition to the Awesome Collection6:19 PM ET: Wild!!! Maddog with the shorthanded goal off a beautiful pass from Cap’n Langs! Devils up 2-1.

6:18 PM ET: Briere barely even shoots the puck as Brodeur makes the easy save on the penalty shot! Flyers PP for the next 2.

6:15 PM ET: Zubrus and Briere trade breakaways and no goal! But a penalty shot is called against the Devs! No good.

6:14 PM ET: Booo!!!! Elias gets 4 minutes as a Flyer hits his own player in the face with a stick.

6:13 PM ET: Scottie Upshall smacks the stick out of the hands of Cap’n Langs and we’ve got another powerplay! Chico is pleased.

6:10 PM ET: The boys are showing some fire now! The Flyers are being smothered as we approach the halfway point of the game.

6:06 PM ET: Great pressure by the Devs following the powerplay goal. Parise gets put in a headlock near the net after a flurry of shots by the Devils.

6:03 PM ET: And we’re on the board! A great cycle and a rebound goal off a Rachunek slapshot from the point by Maddog! Woo!

6:01 PM ET: Great response shift by the Devils. Gionta tripped on a rebound chance. Devils PP! Third time’s a charm!

5:59 PM ET: We’re back, Flyers start on the PP. And boo, just as I’m typing Richards drives home a garbage goal. Poo. 1-0 Flyers.

5:41 PM ET: Period closes out 0-0. Back in 17!

We say it time and time again.  Thank you,  Marty.5:41 PM ET: Spoke too soon, White in the box for hooking. Kind of a crap call. Brodeur makes a circus save to start the Flyers PP!

5:40 PM ET: Much better D by the Devils so far tonight. Knock on wood.

5:34 PM ET: A livelier effort by the Devils the second go around on the PP, but still no score. The boys in Red and Black are controlling the play so far.

5:31 PM ET: Clarkson with another great chance on the partial break, but is taken down before he gets a shot off. Devils powerplay coming up!

5:28 PM ET: A pretty meager powerplay by the Devils ends with a whimper. Full strength hockey here with just over 7 minutes left in the 1st.

5:25 PM ET: Devils powerplay! Sami Kapenen to the box.

5:24 PM ET: Good kill by Jersey. Devs get it in the zone for some quick shots as Asham takes the ice.

5:20 PM ET: Asham going to the box for roughing after tearing the helmet off Lasse Kukkonen. Clarkson is visibly upset from the bench, as always.

5:16 PM ET: Great stickhandling by Clarkson leads to a big chance that sails just wide. Magicman Dave’s got some nice moves these last few games!

5:10 PM ET: Whoa! So some early fireworks between Vishnevski and Mike Knuble leads to a brief scuffle between Rupp and Riley Cote straight off the next faceoff. Edge: draw.

5:07 PM ET: So evidently we have like no refs tonight, and the ones we do have are using Larry Robinson’s skates. Nonetheless, we’re underway!

Return of the Rupp Face.5:03 PM ET: Looks like Paul Martin is back and so is Mr. Mike Rupp, which means no Johnny Oduya. Tear.

5:00 PM ET: Alright, just about time to say goodbye to Senor Miyagi and El Karate Kid Ralph Macchio. Given the Devils’ recent streak of taking penalties every ten seconds and the Flyers’ penchant for suspensions, we could be in for a feisty one. Let’s hope the outcome doesn’t reflect the lovely weather gracing the northeast tonight, unlike yesterday afternoon.

4:44 PM ET: For those of you tuning in from New York City like me, Telemundo is showing The Karate Kid in Spanish on the channel just below FSNY, for your viewing pleasure. Muy Bueno.

4:38 PM ET: Hey all, getting the live-cappery underway a touch early this evening, basically just so I make sure I know what I’m doing. Just in case you haven’t been back to 2ma in a few days, I’m Steve, the new guy. Good to meet you. Should be getting underway in about 30 minutes, so stay tuned!

Average Rating: 4.8 out of 5 based on 206 user reviews.

http://www.2manadvantage.com/2007/12/16/philly-new-jersey-live-cap/