I don't know about you guys, but I'd MUCH rather play NJ than Buffalo or Philly...They're hot, I know, but in terms of offense they don't scare me. I know they have Gomez and Elias and Gionta, but after that not too much. Plus we'll have Rucchin and Rucinsky back, Henke in net...he played great for much of today until the team quit on them and I really don't think this Brodeur is as good as previous Brodeurs. Don't get me wrong, he's a great goalie, HOFer for sure and top 5 in the league right now, but Buffalo is way faster, more dynamic and much scarier...also, and I may get some heat on this, but Buffalo would have way more of a home ice advantage than the Devils...NJ is closer, there will be more Ranger fans there and the Devils sometimes don't even sell-out in the playoffs.
What do you all think?
Well the Devils scare me because they actually have the defensive players and goalie to shutdown Jagr. You know the Madden line is going to be all over him throughout the series and Brodeur is Brodeur. Pandolfo will be shadowing him every minute he's on the ice. And now that NJ has won the division, they have home ice and last change more than the Rangers, so it will be even more difficult to keep Jagr away from their shutdown line. Plus, they do have some offensive weapons that no one has been able to stop. Just look at Gionta. What an amazing season he has had. The Rangers second-line players are going to be the key in this series if the Devils are able to contain Jagr. I hope guys like Prucha, Rucchin, Rucinsky (when he returns) and Sykora understand that they must do their part because Jags can't do it all alone.
All I can say is wow, I don't know if any of you feel the same but if this series ends up in anything short than a sweep for a the devils I will be suprised. This team is on fire right now, they are a cohesive unit and the rangers haven't played as a team since February.
the Devils in the first round (although I was hoping for home ice)
I think that catching them at this juncture is actually good. Can't expect thsi team to play that good for much longer as much as you can't expect the Rangers to play this badly for much longer either.