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#80|Devils @ Penguins|"The last of Lemaire"|Tuesday, April 5, 2010 7:30 PM

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04-04-2011, 06:44 PM
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#80|Devils @ Penguins|"The last of Lemaire"|Tuesday, April 5, 2010 7:30 PM



April 4th, 2011: 7:30 PM @ Consol Energy Center






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Last 10: New Jersey 4-5-1; Pittsburgh 7-3-0

Season series: Sixth and final meeting of the season between these Atlantic Division rivals. Pittsburgh won the first two, New Jersey answered with a pair of victories, and the Penguins regained the edge with a 1-0 on March 25 in a game where both Marc-Andre Fleury and Martin Brodeur were perfect for 65 minutes. James Neal's shootout goal finally decided things in favor of the home team.

Big story: The Penguins still have a chance to finish first in the division and the Eastern Conference, three points behind both the Flyers and Capitals with three games remaining for each team. However, they're only one point ahead of the Lightning for fifth, so hanging onto home ice for the first round remains the immediate focus.

Team Scope:

Devils: For the first time in over two decades, New Jersey will play a regular-season game having already been eliminated from playoff contention. When the Devils last missed the playoffs in 1996, it came after they lost to the Senators in their final regular-season game. Prior to that, they missed the postseason in 1989, finishing 14 points behind the Flyers in the Patrick Division. The dream of a miracle second-half comeback finally ended with Saturday's 3-1 loss to the Canadiens.

"We knew it was going to come," Brodeur said. "It doesn't come as a shocker, really. We had a good run, we played really hard to get ourselves in a position to compete for the last 10 games or 15 games or so and try to get into the playoffs. It was just too much. We've got four more games to just try to keep on doing what we're doing, try to play hard and get some wins."

Penguins: A win over Tampa Bay last Thursday would have put the Lightning in the rearview mirror, but Pittsburgh's one-goal loss made Saturday's Florida follow-up against the Panthers all the more important for the Penguins. Fortunately, after trailing 2-1 through 20 minutes, they responded on a Pascal Dupuis goal early in the second period and scores from Zbynek Michalek and Craig Adams in the third for a 4-2 victory that allowed them to maintain the fourth seed.

"We control our own destiny," Dupuis said. "We needed to win some games and this one was an important one. It's a big two points."

Who's hot: Patrik Elias (3-2-5), Ilya Kovalchuk (2-2-4) and Dainius Zubrus (0-3-3) have three-game points streaks going for the Devils. … As a team, the Penguins have been lethal in shootouts, setting an NHL record by winning four straight games via the penalty-shot tiebreaker from March 21-27. They've won their last five shootouts overall. Neal is 3-for-4 and Alex Kovalev 3-for-5 -- each has two shootout-deciding goals.

Injury report: New Jersey defenseman Colin White has missed the last four games and defenseman Anton Volchenkov has missed three of the last four with lower-body injuries. … Pittsburgh forwards Arron Asham (lower body) and Eric Tangradi (concussion) practiced Monday. Forwards Nick Johnson (upper body) and Sidney Crosby (concussion) skated earlier in the day.

Stat pack: Zach Parise returned for the Devils on Saturday and had two shots in just over 16 minutes of action against the Canadiens in his first game since Oct. 30. Parise had knee surgery three days later. … Michalek has 4 goals in his last 12 games after not scoring one in his first 58 games with the Penguins.

Puck drop: Defenseman Brooks Orpik summed up Pittsburgh's mindset over the final week of the regular season and whether catching Philadelphia is still part of the mindset.

"I think you do. But sometimes you need help from other teams. You just kind of control what you can control," he said. "With the situation we're in with Tampa, we can control that destiny. Against Philly, we need help. That one, I don't think you put as much focus into. If you win your games and Philly happens to lose, then that's great, but it's out of our control."
Goaltenders
#29 Marc-Andre Fleury

vs.
#30 Martin Brodeur


Projected Lineups


Left Wing
Center
Right Wing
James NealMark LetestuAlex Kovalev
Chris KunitzJordan StaalTyler Kennedy
Pascal DupuisMax TalbotChris Conner
Mike RuppCraig AdamsMichael Comrie

Defense
Defense
Brooks OrpikKris Letang
Paul MartinZybnek Michalek
Matt NiskanenBen Lovejoy


Left Wing Center Right Wing
Ilya Kovalchuk Travis Zajac Kyle Palmieri
Zach Parise Jacob Josefson Dainus Zubrus
Patrik Elias Brian Rolston Mattias Tedenby
Adam Mair David Steckel David Clarkson

Defense Defense
Andy Greene Henrik Tallinder
Anssi Salmela Mark Fayne
Mark Fraser Jay Leach

Did You Know?


This will be the final time the Penguins will face current Devils head coach, Jacques Lemaire*

*Unless the Devils hire John McLean to coach the team next season



Team Stats


 
46-25-8Record36-37-5
2.73G/G2.05
2.39GA/G2.49
15.3%PP %14.4%
86.4%PK %83.8%
31.6Shots/G28.6
28.5Shots Ag./G26.2
49.2%FaceOff %51.5%

Penguins Team Leaders


Stat
Player
 
GoalsSidney Crosby 32
AssistsKris Letang 41
PointsSidney Crosby 66
+/-Sidney Crosby +20
PIMMatt Cooke 129
FO%Sidney Crosby 55.7%
TOI/G FSidney Crosby 21:55
TOI/G DKris Letang 24:03


Devils Team Leaders


Stat
Player
 
GoalsIlya Kovalchuk 29
AssistsPatrik Elias 39
PointsPatrik Elias 58
+/-Mark Fayne +9
PIMDavid Clarkson 116
FODavid Steckel 58.1%
TOI/G FIlya Kovalchuk 22:28
TOI/G DHenrik Tallinder 22:32

"It's A Great Day for Hockey!"



Last edited by 71: 04-05-2011 at 11:18 AM.
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Old
04-04-2011, 06:47 PM
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Big McLargehuge
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Jacques Lemaire will never retire. Zombie Lemaire will be ruining hockey well into his 400s.

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04-04-2011, 06:50 PM
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Michalek practicing on the PP. Can't be worse than Martin, even though I love the **** out of him.

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04-04-2011, 07:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big McLargehuge View Post
Jacques Lemaire will never retire. Zombie Lemaire will be ruining hockey well into his 400s.

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04-04-2011, 07:07 PM
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Hey y'know what would be better than the fact that tomorrow is our last game against NJ?

A game tomorrow that isn't a snoozefest.


I can dream....right?

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04-04-2011, 07:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MetalheadPenguinsFan View Post
Hey y'know what would be better than the fact that tomorrow is our last game against NJ?
A PP goal. Please.

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Old
04-04-2011, 07:15 PM
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Hoping for a regulation win. It's deperatley needed.

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04-04-2011, 09:43 PM
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Big 2 points to stay up ahead of Tampa...

Let's go PENS!

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04-04-2011, 09:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 45flight View Post
Michalek practicing on the PP. Can't be worse than Martin, even though I love the **** out of him.
I like giving Z a look. You have to try something different. Paul Martin just isn't that guy.

Hope they jump the Devils early, which is probably what they need to do to win.

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04-04-2011, 09:55 PM
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Michalek with a one timer PP goal, book it.

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04-04-2011, 10:00 PM
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cant wait to watch such an entertaining game! oh wait....

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04-04-2011, 10:02 PM
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I like the "It's A Trap" picture. Very Ackbar-ish.

I hope the thread title didn't jinx Lemaire returning... for the love all that's holy, retire already.

And finally, there are some games during the season where you don't feel so bad if you miss it. Game 80 against the Devils, a team already eliminated, and our position is almost set... well, we'll see how the night goes.

Edit: A few big wins going in to the playoffs would be nice though. Get the power play going too.

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04-04-2011, 10:04 PM
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Originally Posted by Falcon89 View Post
Michalek with a one timer PP goal, book it.
Lifted this from the PensBlog.




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04-04-2011, 10:20 PM
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Just wanted to add that the best thing about Devils fans is that a third of them deny the trap, another third say everyone traps and the other third insist it does nothing to make the game less exciting.

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04-04-2011, 10:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SirBrad View Post
Just wanted to add that the best thing about Devils fans is that a third of them deny the trap, another third say everyone traps and the other third insist it does nothing to make the game less exciting.
Sorry but that one is true. Most teams try to get a lead first but if leading in the second half the game you bet any good team including ours is going to start dropping fore checkers into the neutral zone.

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04-04-2011, 10:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SirBrad View Post
Just wanted to add that the best thing about Devils fans is that a third of them deny the trap, another third say everyone traps and the other third insist it does nothing to make the game less exciting.
If they just had a unified voice they'd be so much easier to tolerate...(typical addendum here that a number of really good Devils posters are out there).

It really is humorous how spread out amongst the board they are with the trap. Yes, most teams enact a trap in some sense (I'd be willing to bet all)...usually when up by multiple goals in the third or by one in the final 10 minutes (not when up by one 5 minutes into the game). Yes, New Jersey runs the trap (a different story up until Lemaire's re-hiring...they had no system before that and had a looser system last year)...as has every Lemaire-coached team before. The only reason the Wild weren't as widely hated as the Devils are is because they couldn't figure out how to win with that strategy while New Jersey has (also fan bases...Minnesota's fans are largely homogeneous, hanging out with each other on the team's board instead of joining multi-team board such as this). As for the final group...when you're winning...then fine, yes, it's fine I suppose...but when an inferior team is running it (such as New Jersey now, Minnesota previous) then it is ****ing damn boring for everyone who wasn't raised watching the trap.

Bylsma has had a near-trap system in games against the Devils in the post-Crosby era. The last Pens-Devils game was one of the most painfully boring pieces of crap I've ever watched. Add Crosby and delete Lemaire from the picture and that doesn't happen...but our usual system is going to get destroyed by the trap more often than not...I give props to Bylsma for being able to get the team to run a mirrored system to absolute proficiency...but that last Pens-Devils game was probably the most boring game I've seen in years...and that goes against both teams.


Last edited by Big McLargehuge: 04-04-2011 at 11:03 PM.
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04-05-2011, 08:35 AM
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Originally Posted by 45flight View Post
Michalek practicing on the PP. Can't be worse than Martin, even though I love the **** out of him.
Z has a hard shot and puts it on net. I was shocked it took him so long to score this year.

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04-05-2011, 08:48 AM
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I hate Devils games. At first i get excited that hockey is on.. but after the first period i'm usually thinking to myself "why am i even watching this? There are better things to do."

Devils and the Wild.. these are games to just scratch off the calendar.

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04-05-2011, 08:51 AM
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Originally Posted by MrPenalty View Post
I hate Devils games. At first i get excited that hockey is on.. but after the first period i'm usually thinking to myself "why am i even watching this? There are better things to do."

Devils and the Wild.. these are games to just scratch off the calendar.
I normally end up killing my iPhone battery playing on my phone during the game. I usually end up watching Devils/Pens games in the same manner I watch baseball games: Half interested.

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04-05-2011, 08:56 AM
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Originally Posted by eXile59 View Post
Sorry but that one is true. Most teams try to get a lead first but if leading in the second half the game you bet any good team including ours is going to start dropping fore checkers into the neutral zone.
It is true to some extent, but there's no denying that games against the Devils are almost always lousy games to watch.

As for Devils' fans, winning is always exciting to some extent. Even when the Pens win a trap-fest (and it happens) it feels pretty good when the final horn rings...

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04-05-2011, 09:13 AM
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Lifted this from the PensBlog.



Love it.


Good GDT as well! Let's Go Pens, build some momentum into the playoffs.

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04-05-2011, 10:14 AM
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For the record I don't think it's on Root tonight, I think it's on VS (http://www.nhl.com/scores)

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04-05-2011, 10:20 AM
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Lets go

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04-05-2011, 10:32 AM
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For the record I don't think it's on Root tonight, I think it's on VS (http://www.nhl.com/scores)
You are correct.


VERSUS & TSN2

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04-05-2011, 10:32 AM
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Originally Posted by SirBrad View Post
I normally end up killing my iPhone battery playing on my phone during the game. I usually end up watching Devils/Pens games in the same manner I watch baseball games: Half interested.
words with friends and angry birds during every devils game until the 3rd period

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