Thoughts from Section 209: Devils vs Leafs, 1/29/2009

Did anyone notice the Full Moon last night?? You should have…it set the tone for that game last night… weird shit was EVERYWHERE, 208/209 was a little too drunk and ran out of gas, and boy so have the Devils… the good news is they played Toronto and the Maple Leafs this year are simply known as “Chicken Soup for the Struggling Hockey Club’s Soul”… and on a FUCKING COLD night like last night, we all need a little Chicken Soup!!!

The Good:
— ZUBBIE!!!!!!!!!!! See why we didn’t pass the Zubbie Counter to anyone else (yes I’m looking at YOU Mike Jeckel!!), Jesus Christ that was his best game since that 5-point one vs Tampa MANY moons ago …..*sigh* I wish he could do that against non-lottery teams, but that could happen if he sticks with Parise and Zajac
— Zach Parise was hungry and attacking all over the place tonight… and DAMN he wanted that hat trick… it was like he realized he’s 12 goals behind Marleau and saw the awful Leafs as a chance to get back into it all at once!!!
— Patrick Davis!! He looks like he’s settling in
— I liked that Lemaire gave Bergfors a night off… he had totally hit the wall and needed a night to get his legs back… I think Niedermayer needs one or two of these two… and with Pelley back we can SPOT THE OLD FARTS ALSO!!!!

The Bad:
— Doc said it nicer then I would have… and I’ll give her credit for it:
** Deanna Tortorello Over “I’m pretty sure Doc just said this is Marty’s eleventy-second start.”
If Martin Brodeur is Canada’s No. 1 goalie in the Olympics next month, as everyone expects, the Devils will probably pay the price in March. Coach Jacques Lemaire said Friday he would have to rest Brodeur if the 37-year-old goalie plays a lot in Vancouver. “If he’s the man to go in all the way through the Olympics, I think we will have to give him some off time after,” Lemaire indicated. “Because that will be intense.”
So WHY THE HELL NOT START NOW??? Ever hear of PREVENTIVE MAINTENANCE??? You don’t beat the horse until it fucking breaks!!! You rest the horse knowing it has a big practice tournament is coming in mid-Feburary… and the REAL EVENT comes in April… you have a VERY capable goalie, who will in theory be here AFTER MB30… PLAY HIM!!!!
— Speaking of bad decisions… it’s seems Lemaire has been a little Sutter-ized of late… starting Neids and Pando in overtime?? REALLY… the idea is to score goals, not let the group stiffer then an old folk’s home after a tragic Viagra accident out there!!!
Taking Zubbie off the Parise line (maybe thinking Zubrus needed to come back slow after missing you know.. most of the year and all)… but WAY too much of Nieds and Pando in the 3rd period too….PLAY THE KIDS please!! (nice to bitching they “only” got 8-10 minutes as opposed to the shift and a half under coach prune-face!)
— the defense… 2 goals in the last 5 minutes and COLTON ORR HAD A BREAKAWAY… let me say that again… COLTON ORR had a goddamn breakaway… I almost don’t blame mb30 for the goal he was probably stunned by it like I get when the random fat guy gets a take off and go breakaway amazed that no one can catch up to his rumblin and tumblin ass and stop him…..Mike Mottau was turning the puck over like it was out of style (but yet he was a +2, how??)… and like I was saying before the excessive ice time has guys playing over their head and it’s coming back to haunt them now… might be a good time to get Corrente, Eckord and Fraser some ice time up here and let some guys if not REST, then slow it down some…….

The Funny:
— ah, and where to begin… I think it’s become my new mission in life… I’m sick and tired of the douchey attitude from people in the lower sections where I’ve been going to watch warmups for FIFTEEN YEARS…. and until this year it’s NEVER been a big deal.. stand in a row, watch them warmup, get a feel for the team and LEAVE, your seats BLOW for a full game experience and I hate them… so fuck you I don’t want your seat…. but my God… EVERY game this year it’s attitude about their seats… don’t you have nachos to buy??? So I started standing in the aisle to not deal with it… and last night this rotten little midget who hates life (I swear he was Steve Cangelosi’s KILLER ACCOUNTANT, cause you know those little people hang out together)…. sends his mistake child in like a retard missile barreling and cutting through everyone and clips me in the knee (and I’m still aching from my hockey game last night, so I’m annoyed already), then his dad pushes through me and I snap… YOU KNOW AN EXCUSE ME ACTUALLY works….. he claims he said one, but then again those people in the emails from Nigeria claim I have 50 million sitting there for me….and then the lil accountant starts screaming and cursing at ME because I called him on his douche-ness, which pissed the guy behind me off cause now he’s dropping F bombs like he’s me on here :p….he tells me to go to my seat and I tell him loudly that I have EVERY right to be here cause I’m a season ticket holder and been doing this for FIFTEEN YEARS….and I ain’t going nowhere!!! The lil fella actually went to the usher and whined at her… and I told her … I ain’t going… and going I didn’t!!! Though on sheer principle I let EVERYONE in the area politely and with a smile leave the aisle and the section in front of me… ok on principle to further provel Cangeliosi and Goldberg’s #1 CPA that it was his idiocy that caused the whole thing…. fuck you one time a year person and I HOPE YOU DIE!!!
(talk about setting the tone eh??)
— Oh man was 209 a little extra drunk last night… and the full moon added to it I’d bet :p…. poor Pete… he’s got so drunk he got QUIET… that was a weird third period seeing him NOT yell and holler and pester Clutch all game… but hey he got Gustafsson AND Toskala’s names right…. good for him… he’s fucked on Sunday since the guy’s name is QUICK… he doesn’t do one syllable names well….gonna have to coach Dee on advising him since I’ll be here making food for the Royal Rumble!!
… the KILL chant was off all night too… first it was too fast, like an old record player on 44 instead of 33 (oh wait.. none of y’all know what a record IS… *sigh*)… then it got WAY TOO SLOW… in fact it was so slow it was at a Chris Benoit-level rhythm… what do I mean… a Kill so slow it takes all weekend to finish it off……
— …. going with the weird of last night…. when Parise (AAAAHHHHH) scored (and what a goal it was)… the dude behind me had a Stone Cold moment…. thumbs on the beer bottle… shakes them beer goes spewing EVERYWHERE… and yeah I got doused… but you know what… I thought about it… this shit washes off… he just wasted $16 on a beer bath… so he’s pissing more money away then I am…. so go him!!!!… and it set up a great line from mister Barry:
“Barry Meikle: Wow, he’s paying nearly as much per goal as the Rangers did on Gomez.” (since I did comment on it for the facebook thread)
— one last funny moment I got glimpse of….puck gets chipped out of play and pops some dude in the front row…. he’s wearing a Leafs jersey (sadly it was not our favorite accountant of DOOM)….and he’s wobbling… as he wobbles… I catch the number… he’s wearing a Gustafsson (whatever his name is) jersey…. I kinda sit and think…”shit that was the best save the big Swede made all night!”

…. So like I said… programming note… Scott’s gonna be HOME for Sunday’s game… so no thoughts about the Kings, well except for the fact that I fucking HATE the city of LA and I hope it dies!! But I do have a month in review to do soon… so Fret not … 2 man shall NOT go into a coma again this week…. and I’m open and willing to take suggestions on what you guys would like me to do to give Olympic Coverage??? Should we adopt a team??? (I say Sweden, no major Devils on the team, so we get rest and we let Lundqvst burn out his puffy padded self in the Olympics so the Rangers suck more, and the Devils get some NEEDED rest)….you guys read this crap… lemme know what ya want!!!!

I STILL LIVE, I SWEAR!

The end of the college semester is always tough.  Especially the closer one gets to finally graduating (one semester left – if I’m lucky/good, I graduate exactly 10 years after getting the hell out of high school.  Sad, but fitting).

So sorry I haven’t posted much lately, but with a straight month ’til school starts up again (and about two months before it gets insane again), I’ll be back on a regular basis for awhile again.  Thanks so much for sticking with us.  And thanks to Scott for not letting the site fall into total abandoned disrepair.

I have only been paying slight attention to what’s been going on in the world of hockey.  Martin Brodeur broke another record, this one more meaningless than other recent ones (Games played?  Games started? Something like that.)  Zach Parise may very well never score a goal again.  Travis and Zach have split up, are seeing other people, but everyone knows they’ll be back together soon enough.

The BIG news, though…is that officially, at the end of play last night, the Devils were in first place.

First place in the Atlantic?  Well, yeah, but think bigger.

First place in the Eastern conference?  Keep going.  How about something like…

FIRST PLACE IN THE ENTIRE NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE.

Yeah, this team is damn friggin’ good.

So tonight, the Devils look to extend that lead in the league against the perennial-doormats-turned-surprisingly-5th-place-in-the-East Atlanta Thrashers.  The last time the two teams played, I believe we were all in moderate freak-out mode, as the Thrashers thrashed (sorry, hack move, I know) the Devils at the Rock, the third game of a three consecutive home loses to start the season.  Needless to say, I’m a little less freaked out now, as is the rest of the fanbase.  And if you’re nitpicking over bad plays or poor shot selection or the team’s inability to make us proud by kicking ass in the situation that is our namesake, then go back and read the bolded print earlier in this post.

I would be moderately stunned if Martin Brodeur starts tonight, after starting about a zillion consecutive games and then flying to Hotlanta for today’s game.  I think THE Yann Danis deserves the start.  Of course, trying to guess when Marty sits is probably ridiculous anyways.  Edit: And yeah, apparently Marty’s starting again tonight.  Please join myself and the rest of the Devils fanbase in a loud cry of “WTF, I thought this was an Olympic year?!”

But, even if La Grenouille (remember, thus is Yann Danis’ nickname, so says I) does start, Brodeur will be on the ice tonight.  The Senators announced this morning that Mike Brodeur will get his NHL debut start this evening against the Minnesota Wild, who are probably in their own manner of freak out this afternoon after THIS happened.

Note to the NHL: The Senators are really into sabotage.  First seven Sabres get food poisoning after eating at a steakhouse in Ottawa, and now this?  Thankfully the Devils have already gotten through one game up there alive.

A Brief Open Letter to Martin Brodeur, American Citizen

Dear Marty,discofries copy

Congratulations on passing your United States of America citizenship test.  Now that you are an official American citizen, there is one bit of wisdom I’d like to pass along:

It’s not poutine anymore.  It’s Disco Fries.  Get used to it, and please assimilate accordingly.

Again, congratulations!

With love,

2 Man Advantage

Devils @ Stars LIVECAP!

10:48 PM: Oh, the ZubbieCounterContest, of course.  A big congrats to Kristyn, who’s 27th Goal As A Devil “27 Dresses” Zubbie picture just edged out Kevin B.’s 26th Goal As A Devil Zubmission.  Kristyn, get a hold of us at zubbiecounter at gmail dot com and we’ll get your unidentified swag in the mail.  Congratulations!  Goodnight everyone.

10:46 PM: Okay, I’m all kinds of frustrated right now.  The site doesn’t wanna load, the Devils won’t wanna win, I give up.  Stars win, 5-3.  First LiveCap of the season = total failure.  Maybe I’ll see about doing one next weekend.

9:53 PM: Patty Elias has two assists on the night, playing primarily at center.  I have to admit, Zubbie’s probably not putting up any points in that role.

9:52 PM: Third period on…let’s hope the website holds up!

9:37 PM: Okay, there’s some issues with WordPress right now apparently.  The website won’t load on a regular basis.  The score is now 3-2 Stars, with Brian Rolston scoring on a slapshot on the power play about halfway through the period (Tyler Eckford picks up his first career NHL point with a secondary assist on the goal).  Second period is now over, and hopefully I’ll be back for a third period LiveCap, I hope.  If the website chooses to load properly.  If this little note even makes it to publication….

9:11 PM: Apparently Nelson Muntz laughing means we’re going back to the penalty kill.  Travis Zajac is off for tripping.  Our penalty kill has not been stellar tonight.  Gulp.

9:06 PM: Ott just pushed Andy Greene quite rudely.  YOU DON’T PUSH ANDY GREENE.  Andy Greene will remember Ott’s number, and one evening, when Ott least expects it…BAM!  He goes Greene.

9:05 PM: Okay, as much as I like him, THE Yann Danis is just not making the stops Marty’s made so far this period.  He got three strong ones on one sequence there and fought ’em all off.  We’ve a chance in this yet.

9:01 PM: Good stop by Marty (uhh, our Marty, not their’s) to start off his relief appearance.

9:00 PM: Game back on, and interestingly, Martin Brodeur is in net.  THE Yann Danis cannot be pleased.

8:43 PM: Aaaaaand, period over.  I’m gonna go get a stiff drink.  Hopefully the second period proves better.

8:42 PM: One minute left in the period.  Thank god.

8:41 PM: Okay, I hope it wasn’t that important.  Power play, not successful.  Sigh.

8:39 PM: Barch to the box for Dallas, Devils to the PP.  Is it safe to say it’s somewhat important that they score a goal on this power play?  I think it is.

8:37 PM: …BANANA SHPEEL?  Really, Cirque du Soleil?  Really?

8:34 PM: Dammit.  Robidas takes a feed and pops one behind Danis, 3-1 Stars on another power play goal.  I don’t want to write off this game already, but scoring four goals is not something this team is primed to do on a regular basis.

8:33 PM: I would be enjoying this game a lot more if it were in high def.  Also, if we were doing as well in the last 14 minutes was we did in the first.

8:31 PM: Tyler Eckford is not making a good first impression.  Penalty the other night, ‘nother penalty tonight.  Stars back to the power play, they scored on their first one.

8:27 PM: Elias/Rolston/Langenbrunner is one of the lines.  You know our team is getting old when Patrik Elias is the spring chicken of the line.

8:24 PM: I feel so bad for Matt Corrente.  It’s gotta be rough being a defenseman and playing forward in your first career game.  He’s wearing number 32, by the way, which looks so weird on a Devils jersey these days.

8:21 PM: Dammit.  I sat Riberio on my fantasy team, hoping we’d shut him down.  He scored, it’s 2-1 Stars, and I don’t even earn fantasy hockey points for it.  WEAK!

8:20 PM: Clarkson goes to the box and feels shame, y’know.  Hooking and all, shameful business.  Devils go to the PK.

8:17 PM: Ooof, BIG rebound off the pads of THE Yann Danis.  Zajac with some good backchecking to prevent an easy goal.  Clarkson about to get a penalty…eventually…if we ever touch the puck again…

8:16 PM: Morrow’s out of the box, Devils power play only gets one shot on goal.

8:15 PM: I am way out of LiveCapping shape.  Sorry.

8:13 PM: Matt Corrente, the young defenseman, makes his NHL debut…as a forward on his first shift.  This is gonna be an interesting game.  Brendan Morrow takes a penalty and the Devils hit the power play.

8:12 PM: Well it didn’t take long to give it back either.  Stephane Robidas with a sinking shot that was probably tipped, and it’s a 1-1 tie.

8:10 PM: That didn’t take long at all.  Assist to Mottau, and possibly someone else too.

8:09 PM: WHAT?!?!  BRIAN ROLSTON…ON A BREAKAWAY…WITH A GOAL?! 1-0 Devils!

8:08 PM: The puck, she hits the ice in Dallas.  Game on, baby.

8:05 PM: Anyone else sick of the Nissan Altima “Love Hurts” commercial yet?  (Side note:  Still not sick of the “The Most Interesting Man In The World” Dos Equis commercials.)

8:02 PM: OH YEAH!  THE Yann Danis is in net tonight!  This could be fun!  La Grenouille!

7:56 PM: So Zubbie’s out (I don’t know what this blog would do if we hadn’t found a second mascot in Andy Greene).  Pelley’s scratched (and not happy about it).  The Devils are dressing seven defensemen: Greene, White, Mottau, Salvador, Fraser, Eckford, and Corrente).

7:46 PM: Why is it that every time I LiveCap, we’re on MSG+2×7/28-(-12)=?

7:45 PM: Okay, so.  I know there’s some stuff I’ve been not doing.  Namely, naming a winner in the ZubbieCounterContest.  I’ll do that at the END of tonight’s game, in this very LiveCap.  That’s what’s called “enticement to stay with me and enjoy the LiveCap.”  (Okay, so you can read it whenever you want, but still.)

7:43 PM: Ha!  I like how they showed a Rod Pelley hit when talking about the Olympics.  That’s as close as you’re ever getting, Roderick.

7:41 PM: OMG2MALIVECAP!  Sorry it’s taken so long to make this happen, but I’m actually sitting in my room, on my computer, at the time of a Devils game, so why the hell not?  Put on a pot of coffee (light & sweet for me, thanks) and join me, will you?

Lemaire touts success of 6-on-5 offense

NEWARK, N.J. — Jacques Lemaire’s radical new 6-on-5 approach to offense is paying dividends early and the New Jersey Devils coach says it won’t be long before other teams begin mimicking his strategy, much like the neutral zone trap in the 1990s.

“I’m amazed no one thought of it earlier,” Lemaire said ahead of Monday night’s game with the Philadelphia Flyers. “Six skaters on the ice at a time. It’s so simple and effective. It’s overpowering.”

The Devils will be vying to tie a league record 10th straight road win to start the season Monday and are riding an 8-game winning streak overall, which Lemaire largely attributes to having more players on the ice than his opposition at any given time.

Lemaire acknowledged that there have been some growing pains to playing the unorthodox style of hockey. The Devils have taken a league leading 647 too many men on the ice bench minors just 18 games into the season.

“Yea, the refs, they don’t really know what to do with it. They’ll come around though,” Lemaire said. “That’s what happens with every new idea though. Soon everyone will be doing it. If that happens, I might have to start throwing another goalie out there. Maybe send Arlette out to sing during penalty kills. There’s a lot of options with this.”

Devils leading scorer Zach Parise said it was tough to get used to a new system and a new coach, but believes the players have really bought into the system.

“It was weird at first,” Parise said. “At first, if you were the extra guy, Jacques would have you kind of hang back near the bench and act like you were talking to [Devils backup goaltender Yann] Danis, you know like you didn’t even realize you were on the ice. Then when the refs weren’t looking we’d just act like we’d been there the whole time.”

The Devils will skate without Patrick Elias on Monday, who is still nursing a bottle over the fact that Martin Brodeur didn’t invite him on his private jet to Lou Lamoriello’s Hall of Fame Induction. Additonally, center Travis Zajac will miss at least six months after farting without leaning and tearing both his MCL and ACLs, further compounding the team’s injury woes.

The team also put out a press release Sunday stating that the ban on Patricia Greuter, who has been repeatedly caught attempting to swap Martin Broduer’s MB30 mask for his old one, remains in effect and have asked Devils fans who see her near any games to report her whereabouts immediately.

Editor’s note: On the off chance anyone took this seriously..don’t. It’s fake. Get a sense of humor.

Pre-Pre Season Rookie Camp Scrimmage… Thoughts from.. ahhh, wherever the hell I was sitting…

Now I know summer time filler ain’t my thing, but this worked out PERFECTLY…. a Friday Night i was in and fell asleep before 4am…. a new coach… new outlook on life… and time to put the miserable feelings and hatred and anger (not like my personal life mirrored the way the Devils season went… oh no no no no :p)…. Season tickets are all but paid (I got kinda lucky, a customer’s entire network took a shit… and hey it paid the STH bill… I love IT!)… and it’s time to start letting ALL (and I do mean ALL) the miserable feelings and hatred go to the wayside and get re-vamped on life and Devils hockey!!!

So before I start, I’ve answered it a million times, and lemme steal my mystery friend’s FAQ section:

— Scott: Aren’t you freaking out because the Devils lost all those players and didn’t sign no one??
NO… in fact the opposite… I’m jacked up about it… those guys took us as far as they would go, and it’s time to pass the torch as it was from Richer/Lemieux/MacLean and Driver…. and then to Elias/Stevens/Niedermommy… and NOW it’s FINALLY time… it’s time for this THIRD generation of Devils talent (Zajac/Parise/Martin… soon to be Corrente, Eckford, Bergfors and Tedneby) to GET THE HELL OUT THERE and make THEIR mark on Devils hockey now and forever!!!! And that’s just awesome to me… this is how you WIN in the NHL… you maximize your cheap talent… surround it with GOOD talent… keep the team kinda young and enhance your core!!!

— But Scott, what if the rookies suck??
… and the vets didn’t?? How many times did Gionta shoot it right into the logo… or Madden not that accurate… and Mister NoGoalik was just a FORCE the second time around right??? I’ll take a young guy who will improve and has UPSIDE over an old fart ready to fall off the cliff ANYDAY!!

— so, Scott are you past your hatred of Martin Brodeur yet??
… no… fuck him… mb30 still pisses me off and it’s the ONLY thing I like about Lemaire being here (well aside his teaching ability)… he’s the only coach who made our prick “superstar” sit his ass on some pine!

Anyway… before this becomes a 500-page tangent… Let’s get to today’s goodness!!
Instead of the good the bad and the funny, I think I’ll take it player by player and add some overall comments too:

62: Mattias Tedenby:
HOLY SHIT was he a man amongst boys today (if you’re on my facebook and if not dammit why not??) you saw me RAVING about him left right and sideways!! The kid is FAST as anything… he’s always making moves (I don’t think there was one shift where he didn’t beat a player one on one and do something with it).. he didn’t score today but he didn’t NEED to… he was the best damned guy on the ice today BY FAR!! I think he gets a legit shot in training camp… I know he was playing lesser talent, but he had the LOOK, the moves, the feel and the swagger of an NHL-Ready player today!

10: Rod Pelley:
Bleech… didn’t do much, but then again… I don’t expect much from him….
he’s been pretty much handed a spot on the roster… so be it….
Facebook status comment: “rod pelley is the new pandolfo”

52: Nick Palmeri:
Me and Rob kept commenting on how much he was dragging the Tedenby line down today… slow… plodding… stone hands all over the place… our luck he plays good defense and makes the team… given it’s ONE GAME and anyone can suck on any given day… but that today was also Pandolf-ian, I don’t think he lasts long in camp

34: Matt Corrente:
Did not play shoulder injury… that bummed me… i was gonna focus on him as much as the “MagicSwede” as we named #62 today

51: PL^3… also looked like you’d expect…threw some hits… raised some hell… ran a goalie (I still get mad when goalies don’t jump up and attempt murder like I would….) had a nice two stuff and tip play in front of the far nets from us and tried to lobby like hell for the goal…. but was not meant to be!!!

Jeff Frazee:
Looked pretty good even in the losing effort (well aside from the penalty shot… he got deke-man-willied to hell on that one) and was the best of the three goalies today… no clue which one was Long and which was Felice… goalies are not worthy of numbers it seems 🙁

50: Matt Halishcuk…scored.. was in front of the net alot and did a LOT of good things today… I liked what I saw of him and he’s gonna get a two fingered serious look in camp for sure!!

66: Derek Rodwell… of the guys I knew nothing about, our 5th round pick impressed the HELL out of me… good size… good hands… plays a bit nasty and scored a penalty shot goal… he’s a guy to keep an eye on…..

Didn’t really notice our Russians in Zharkov or Vasyunov (though he did have a nice point blank chance to ice it late and blew it!), Jacob Josefson looked overwhelmed and not ready yet, which is ok too… and there was one fight which I am uploading on the youtube as I type this!!!

Goals:
(1-0) Eckford.. jumped into the slot and ripped a wrister clean over the goalie… pretty stuff!
(1-1) Cormier… stuffed home a rebound on Frazee off the near post
(2-1, white) Halischuk… a sweet move in front where he was given WAY too much time… waits.. looks… dekes.. TOP SHELF… you get served!! (team white’s D was not so hot at best)
(2-2) Eric Castonguay is ALL ALONE in front again and rips one of BOTH POSTS and somehow in the net… he was this close to blowing it… which would have probably gotten him a roster spot!
(3-2, black) Derek Rodwell…. who like I said before was impressive… penalty shot goal… to be youtubed ASAP
(3-3) Griner… a long wrister from the point…hits goalie (not frazee) in the shoulder, then off the stick and in…yeah Chico he’s gonna want that save back :p
(4-3)Mcintrye a penalty shot goal that can only be called UBER-POWNAGE!! Video to follow (in lieu of penalty calls they get penalty shots)

Most of the Devils staff and higher-ups were there… saw Stevens on one team… saw Lou and Terreri… and Sergei Brylin too!! (poor Sarge… he looked like he just woke up and had a WICKED hangover too :p)

How’s that for a lil piece of October in July???
Once the videos are all up… I’ll let ya know… or just keep an eye on http://www.youtube.com/crashliner

2 Man Advantage Free Agent Signing Day Happy Fun Time & Box Social 2009!

10:57 PM: Kay, this looks like a good place to end the night. Thanks for tuning in everyone, check back for any (or no?) Devils signings as they happen!  -Josh & Patricia

10:55 PM:
Aaand we have numbers for the Havlat deal. Looks to be six years at $5-million a year.

10:30 PM:
Apparently the Wild are also closing in on Saku Koivu.

10:26 PM:
TSN’s Darren Dreger reports that Havlat and the Wild do have a verbal agreement in place.

10:23 PM:
Unconfirmed report that Martin Havlat has signed with the Minnesota Wild. More to come.

9:58 PM:
Okay folks, we’re going to stay live until 11PM ET and then call it a night. Josh and Patricia are quite tired after a hectic July 1st. Naturally, if anything breaks, we’ll be sure to report it. Thanks for sticking with us tonight!

9:42 PM:
Report out of Montreal indicates Saku Koivu, Alex Tanguay, and Alexei Kovalev will not be re-signed. Lou, GET ON IT. KOIVU. NOW.

9:19 PM: I now dub thee John “Chicago Style” Mad Dog.

9:03 PM:
Confirmed, Madden to the Hawks. One year at $2.75-million.

9:02 PM:
We can confirm that Madden will NOT be returning with the Devils next season.

9:00 PM: John Madden
may have signed with the Chicago Blackhawks. Working on it.

8:57 PM:
The Phoenix Coyotes have signed Jason LaBarbera to a two-year contract. Financial terms undisclosed.

8:53 PM:
Rich Chere is reporting that prospect Jeff Frazee may very will be the backup to Martin Brodeur next season for the Devils. Looks like we might not get to use the Weekes Laser picture anymore…sad face.

8:51 PM:
The Calgary Flames have signed Frederik Sjostrom. Terms undisclosed.

8:47 PM: Chris Neil
has decided to stay in Ottawa after all, re-upping with the Senators for a four-year, $8-million contract.

8:35 PM:
Indeed. Gio has been reunited with Scott Gomez in Habs-land. Five years at $25-million. Uh…Saku, wanna play in Newark?

8:33 PM: Reports indicate Devils winger Brian Gionta has signed with the Montreal Canadiens. Working on confirmation.

8:23 PM: Marian Gaborik
has signed with the New York Rangers  for five years at $37.5-million total. Overpay much? So, let me get this straight. Rangers get rid of Gomez as a salary dump, then spend seven ba-gillion dollars on an oft-injured winger? Genius.

8:07 PM:
Good ol’ Tom Gulitti reports that we might hear within the next few hours where Mr. Brian Gionta will land.  Montreal has been the number one talked about team for the good part of the day.

7:28 PM:
The Columbus Blue Jackets have signed Mathieu Garon to a two-year, $2.4-million deal.

7:19 PM: Jason Strudwick
has re-signed with the Edmonton Oilers for $700,000 over one year.

6:54 PM:
Things seem to have quieted down a bit. We’re still here though, ready to report any free agent signings or trades!

6:24 PM: Samuel Pahlsson
has signed a three-year deal with the Columbus Blue Jackets worth a total of $7.95-million.

6:15 PM: Steve Sullivan
has re-signed with the Nashville Predators. The deal is worth $7.5-million over two years.

6:11 PM:
The Bruins have signed Steve Begin to a one-year, $850,00 contract.

6:01 PM:
Bob McKenzie is reporting the Komisarek deal to be worth five years at $4.5-million a season.

5:55 PM: Mike Komisarek
has signed with the Toronto Maple Leafs. Working on terms.

5:54 PM:
Little bit more info on the Kubina deal: Colin Stewart also goes to the Leafs in exchange for the rights to Tim Stapleton.

5:49 PM: Vernon Fiddler
has signed a two-year deal with the Phoenix Coyotes that will pay him $1.1-million a season. Byron Bitz has also re-signed with the Boston Bruins. Terms not disclosed. The Ottawa Senators have re-signed Mike Brodeur to a one-year, two-way contract.

5:46 PM:
The Minnesota Wild have signed Greg Zanon to a three-year deal worth a total of $5.2 million.

5:42 PM:
Still very quiet in New Jersey. I know one 2MAer who would love to see Saku Koivu inked by Black ‘n Red.

5:36 PM:
Cammalleri is confirmed per Darren Dreger. The Hurricanes have also re-signed Michael Ryan to a two-way deal.

5:28 PM:
We’re hearing five years at $30-million for Cammalleri, while Garnet Exelby is Toronto’s return for the Kubina deal.

5:26 PM:
Several outlets are reporting Mike Cammalleri has signed with the Montreal Canadiens while the Pavel Kubina-to-Atlanta deal has finally gone through. Working on terms for both deals.

5:25 PM:
The Carolina Hurricanes have re-signed Patrick Dwyer to a two year, two-way deal. Blockbuster.

5:11 PM: The San Jose Sharks have re-signed Kent Huskins to a two-year, $3.4-million contract while David Koci has gone to the Colorado Avalanche for a one-year, $575,000 deal.

4:46 PM:
Devils bruiser Mike Rupp has signed with the Pittsburgh Penguins, two years at $825,000 a year.

4:42 PM: Hal Gill
has signed with the Montreal Canadiens  for two years at $4.5-million total while the Florida Panthers have inked Ville Koistinen.

4:40 PM:
The Philadelphia Flyers have signed Ian Laperierre to a three-year deal at $3.5-million.

4:33 PM:
We’re hearing three years at just over a million per season for $3.6-mill total. Good for you, Mr. Clemmensen. Good for you.



4:27 PM:
Unverified reports indicate Devils netminder Scott Clemmensen will be signing with the Florida Panthers for a multi-year deal. Working on confirmation.

4:22 PM: Adam Pardy
re-signs with the Flames.  Meh.

4:12 PM: 2 years, $2.8 million and $3 million for Cole.

4:09 PM: 4 years, $15 million for the Bulin wall, according to TSN.  Cole’s looking at a 2 year deal from Carolina.

4:01 PM: TSN reporting Nikolai Khabibulin to the Oilers, no word on years or dollars.  Erik Cole also said to be re-signing with the Hurricanes.

3:50 PM: Jaroslav Spacek to the Canadiens, three years, $11.5 million according to the Boston Globe.  With every new Canadiens signing, I get a little more hopeful the Devils will wind up with Saku Koivu…

3:42 PM: Signings have dried up over the last half hour or so.  It’s getting kinda boring.

3:28 PM: Hello 2000! Brian Boucher has signed with the Philadelphia Flyers for two years at $925,000 a season.

3:16 PM: Joel Ward
re-signs with Nashville, 2 years, $1.5 million per.  Aaron Rome signs with Vancouver for $550,000.

3:12 PM: Why can’t anyone with an easy name do anything today?  Lukas Krajicek re-signs with the Lightning.  One year deal.  Financials undisclosed so far.

3:08 PM: Scott Niedermeyer re-ups with Anaheim, one year, $6 million + bonuses.  Drats.

3:05 PM: TG says that both Gionta and Shanahan are fielding offers.  Guess no one cares about poor John Madden.

2:54 PM: Donald Brashear to the Rangers.  Me no likey that. Two years, $2.8 million.

2:50 PM: Andy Strickland reports that Mike Knuble‘s signed with Washington, two years $2.8 million per season.  Nothing official on Gio yet.

2:46 PM: Steve Montador signs with Buffalo.  2 years, $1.55 million per.

2:41 PM: Get your height jokes in while you can, boys and girls, rumors are that Gio’s nearing a deal with a new team.

2:39 PM: TSN just listed the Devils in a laundry-list style rundown of teams that may be interested in Scott Niedermeyer.

2:32 PM: Forgive me for the pun I’m about to make, but…Twitter is all a-Twitter that Brian Gionta is apparently a hot commodity this afternoon.

Been nice knowin’ ya, shorty.

2:23 PM: Dwayne Roloson to the Islanders, 2 years, $2.5 million per according to NY Newsday.  Tomas Kopecky to Chicago for two years, financials not yet known.

2:15 PM: Final numbers on Andy Greene’s contract:  Two years, $1.475 million.  $725,000 in year one, $750,000 in year two for a cap hit of $737,500 per year.  All of this info via TG at Fire & Ice.

2:12 PM: 12 years, $62 million for Hossa from Chicago.  Hot diggity the ‘Hawks better hope he’s healthy and not cursed.

2:11 PM: Conkblock himself, Ty Conklin has signed with the Blues, two years, $1.3 million.  Prepare yourselves for an outdoor game, St. Louis.  Ty likes those games.

2:05 PM: Matt Walker to Tampa Bay, four years/$1.7 million per according to TSN.

2:04 PM: Apparently Chicago’s looking to deal Huet now.  I think they don’t have much of a choice.

2:02 PM: Hossa’s a done deal in Chicago, rumored to be TWELVE years at 5 million a year.

2:01 PM: Darren Dreger reports that the Lightning were in the running for Hossa too.  Which just proves that yes, the Lightning really were given cap immunity.

1:56 PM: Craig Anderson, goalie extraordinaire, to Colorado for two years, financial terms undisclosed.

1:47 PM: A big name!  Finally!  TSN is currently reporting that Marian Hossa will make it to the Stanley Cup Final and lose with the Chicago Blackhawks this year!  Terms undisclosed.  Also, David Booth re-signs with Florida for 6 years/$25.5 million.

1:46 PM: Pavel Kubina rumored to be being traded to Atlanta.

1:45 PM: Pierre LeBrun of ESPN says otherwise on the officialness of the Kovalev deal.  So, it’s still rumored.

1:40 PM: Kovalev deal is now official (or not…), he re-ups with Montreal for 2 years, $8.75 million.  Greene’s a two-year deal, still waiting on the dolla dollas.

1:32 PM: It’s a very slow go of it so far.  Only three signings in the first hour and a half.  If I recall correctly, it picked up between 2 and 3PM last year.

1:18 PM: Kovalev re-signing with Montreal is still just a rumor.  Deal has yet to be signed, according to TSN.

1:13 PM: Tough guy Colton Orr has inked a four-year, $4-million contract with the Toronto Maple Leafs.

1:07 PM: Okay Devils fans, we can all breathe easy.  The official Devils Twitter feed reports that the Devils have re-signed Andy Greene.  Thank God that’s taken care of.  Since it’s the Devils, terms are, naturally, undisclosed.

12:59 PM: Rumors flying that Alex Kovalev has re-signed with Les Habs for 2 years and about $8.8 million.  Not confirmed yet, though.

12:49 PM: Radek Dvorak re-ups in Florida.  Two years, $3.4 million. n Ohlund’s deal is indeed frontloaded, Darren Dreger tweets that Mattias will take home $22.5 million of the $24.5 million in the first five years of the deal.  Speaking of tweets, why not follow us?  @2MAblog

12:27 PM: Ohlund terms disclosed:  SEVEN YEARS, $3.75 million per.  Gotta be frontloaded.  Just has to be.

12:15 PM: First signing!  Perennial Devils trade rumor Mattias Ohlund has signed with the Tampa Bay Lightning.  Terms yet to be disclosed.

12:03 PM: No free agents have signed yet.  What’s taking them so long?!  Jerks.

12:00 PM: Let the festivities commence!  The floodgates, they are being opened.

CLICK TO READ MORE!!! —> [Read more…]

Oh, offseason.

I had a dream last night that the Devils won the Stanley Cup.

Rushing to the computer, in dream form of course, I logged onto 2MA to spill my heart out in sheer jubilation. My team won the Cup, finally.

Of course, my password wouldn’t work and the “publish entry” button mysteriously disappeared so I couldn’t even applaud my team’s brilliant seven-game effort against the Quebec Nordiques.

And then Martin Brodeur turned into Denzel Washington and the rodeo clowns all sang Killing Me Softly as the Puerto Rican Day parade carried on.

I love dreams.

Scott Stevens, was that you? (A half-cap, if you will)

11:53 PM ET: A bittersweet moment, but we must give congratulations to Richard H. as he has taken home the 2MA t-shirt. Thanks to all who entered!
____

10:10 PM ET: What a waste. Season over.

10:08 PM ET:
…and that’s that. Staal fires one past Marty with just seconds left. You’ve gotta be kidding me.

10:07 PM ET:
Devils with the timeout. I’m not sure my heart can handle this.

10:06 PM ET:
Well, we have a minute left. Please do not break my heart, New Jersey.

10:05 PM ET:
DAMN IT DAMN IT DAMN IT.  Tied game.

10:01 PM ET:
Marty with a purty glove save on Rod Brind’amour. Do I need to bust out the You Go Girl picture? I think I do. Ever since that crap goal Brodeur gave up early in the first, he’s been on FI-YAH.

9:57 PM ET:
Two-on-one, Madden and Whitey. That’s almost as good as a Colin White penalty shot.

9:51 PM ET:
Martin Brodeur is a pretty darn good goalie. Just sayin’. He’s keepin’ the lead for the Devils right now.

9:51 PM ET:
Cam Ward is a pretty darn good goalie. Just sayin’. He’s keepin’ the Canes in it right now.

9:47 PM ET:
Madden with the game on his stick, can’t quite get it high enough on Ward. Consequently, Tuomo Ruutu gets absolutely reamed by Patty Elias. This has not been Ruutu’s night.

9:47 PM ET:
GOOD KILL GOOD KILL GOOD KILL

9:46 PM ET:
MARTIN BRODEUR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!11ONE!1

9:45 PM ET:
Captain-brunner takes a bad penalty…no good. This is a huge kill here. DO IT.

9:38 PM ET:
Madden and Pandolfo on a two-on-one? Wow, I’m having serious flashbacks here.

9:33 PM ET:
So, yeah, normally the Rangers Suck chants annoy the heck outta me, but there’s something so divine about hearing 17,625 fans mocking the failed season of the Blueshirts in unison.

Loves it.

9:32 PM ET:
HOW DID THAT NOT GO IN? Elias, you’re fired.

9:29 PM ET:
Let us all take a moment bow our heads in silence for the Rangers’ 2009 season. Rest in Peace, New York. Rest in Peace.

…Nelson, I need to borrow your laugh right here.

_____
9:15 PM ET: Oh, and thanks to everyone who entered the 2MA t-shirt contest! Winner will be announced at the conclusion of tonight’s contest!
_____

9:13 PM ET: And we’re done with two! Devils with an additional buck-twenty left on the power play going into the third period.  I need a drink.

9:11 PM ET: Atta-boy, Zachy. Good to see Parise back on the ice immediately after getting his cheek ripped open.

9:08 PM ET:
Okay, I was totally kidding about, you know, any injury to Zach Parise. Poor pretty boy takes a stick to the face, draws blood and we’re on a four-minute man advantage. Make Gleason and the Canes pay Black ‘n Red!

9:04 PM ET:
GOOD KILL GOOD KILL GOOD KILL

9:02 PM ET:
I’m going to punch Zach Parise in the knee. Keep your stick down holmes! ‘Nother penalty kill for the Devils. Gotta stop taking the penalties.

9:00 PM ET:
GOOD KILL GOOD KILL GOOD KILL

8:56 PM ET:
If Facebook had a Does Not Like button, I’d click it for that play. BAD PENALTY CALL for flip’s sakes! Two-man advantage for the wrong team. Huge kill coming up. DO IT BOYZ! ‘Kay, maybe Facebook has taken over my life too.

Speaking of, add us on Facebook! …ah crap. Addicted.

8:50 PM ET: YUS!! POWER PLAY GOAL SUCKAS! 3-2 NEW JERSEY! What a PLAY by Brian Gionta! Amazing awareness, throws it over to Brian Rolston who *gasp* FINALLY GETS A GOAL! Oh my GOSH it’s like it was in the stars…

8:48 PM ET:
Solid shift by Black ‘n Red results in another pee-pee. If I don’t get my power play goal, I’m going to cry.

8:37 PM ET:
Uh…defense? Hello? Tied game. That power play goal would have been lovely, eh? Whatever, Ray Whitney is stupid.

8:36 PM ET:
Why does our power play suck so much?

8:34 PM ET:
Huge pee-pee! …uh…that sounds wrong. I WANT A POWER PLAY GOAL DARN IT.

8:33 PM:
‘Kay, Brendan Shanahan is awesome. Solid two-way play tonight by the 75893-year-old forward.

8:15 PM: PS Jay Pandolfo can grow a playoff beard like no one’s business. Shades of Scott Niedermayer anyone? …lies. That man came out of the womb with a full, furry, fantastic beard.

8:14 PM: Shaky start, solid ending. Good period overall. I like when the defense doesn’t completely suck. I also like when Captain-brunner looks like his old self.

KEEP IT GOING
KEEP IT GOING
KEEP IT GOING
KEEP IT GOING
KEEP IT GOING

8:03 PM: I LOVE JAY PANDOLFO.
_____

Holy…Johnny O-flippin-duya!

That was the hit of the playoffs right there ladies ‘n gents. I’m pretty sure poor Tuomo is still shakin’ in his skates right now…if he even remembers what skates after that boomer of an open ice hit.

KEEP IT GOING
KEEP IT GOING
KEEP IT GOING
KEEP IT GOING
KEEP IT GOING

Erectile Dysfunction & the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

So. New Jersey and Carolina. Why does this sound so familiar and why do I have only bad memories of past playoff series’ between these two? Whether you think back to 2002 or 2006, both years still leave a bad taste in my mouth. Given the way the Devils have sized up with the Hurricanes throughout this year’s Regular Season, you can probably understand why I’m having a hard time “getting up” for this year’s playoff match-up.


(USEFUL REMINDER: I am a pessimist.)

To a certain extent, it’s almost unfair. Roll back to February. The Devils had just come off a weekend that saw them roll over the #1 and #2 teams in the league… without Martin Brodeur. I don’t think things could have looked any better for the Devils at that point. The offense resembled the year 2001 and the rest of the team was playing solid, near-flawless hockey. The boys from Newark were the talk of the league. At that point, it wouldn’t have surprised anyone if the Devils were still standing come June.

Don't worry, they're legal. FAST FORWARD — Newark, NJ: Present Day. The Devils are slowly recovering from a hellacious two weeks and are stumbling into the playoffs only to match-up with a team that they have had nearly no success against all season long. The team defense — especially the PK — has been abnormally weak as of late, the PP seems to have fallen into the abyss, and the rest of the offense can’t seem to get anything going without the help of some faulty glass-assembly.

At this point, it seems as if this season was just one giant tease that left us all a little frustrated in the end. Despite all the records that have fallen and the plethora of memories that will be taken from this year’s campaign, the outlook, to me, is grim at best. The Devils may be the favorite on paper, but Carolina has New Jersey licked on the ice.

Regardless, I will be supportive. The Devils have shown many a critic (myself included) that their foot belongs in their mouth, and that no meal is finer than crow. I can only hope this flicker is only part of the wildfire that we are about to witness over (hopefully) the next several months.

With that being said, break out the rally towels and put away those razors.

It’s playoff time!!