May 19, 2012, 10:43 PM EDT
After breaking an NHL record for penalty killing efficiency, the New Jersey Devils raised eyebrows by struggling mightily against the Florida Panthers’ power play in round one. The Devils survived that issue to advance and then turned the tide against the Philadelphia Flyers, yet special teams is becoming a concern yet again as they trail the New York Rangers 2-1 in the Eastern Conference finals.
Generating a 3-for-10 success rate isn’t towering, but either way, the Rangers have scored a PP goal in all three contests so far (including one on just two chances in Game 3). Meanwhile, Ilya Kovalchuk scored the Devils’ only PP goal in the series as New Jersey is just 1-for-12.
Dainius Zubrus said he was “way out of position” Girardi PPG. He jumped in on lost draw, leaving Girardi with the wide open shot.
It’s great that Zubrus is owning up to that mistake, but the question must be asked: what will Devils coach Peter DeBoer do to turn the tide? So far, it’s been a tight series – Saturday’s contest was 0-0 going into the third, for example – which places every weakness under a spotlight. Special teams could make or break this series for New Jersey; so far, that factor – plus Henrik Lundqvist‘s goaltending – is making the big difference.
- Comeback fit for a King: Lundqvist, Rangers even series in Game 4 12
- WATCH LIVE: Rangers at Lightning, Game 4 of Eastern Conference Final 6
- Fetisov wants to restrict young Russians from playing in the NHL 38
- All eyes on Lundqvist 10
- Quenneville opted for ‘fresh legs’ by inserting Nordstrom, Versteeg into lineup 12
- Video: Ducks hold off Blackhawks in Game 3 to take series lead 30
- (Video) PHT Extra: On Babcock, sticking to the process and housebuilding analogies 3
- Babcock predicts ‘pain’ for Leafs, who are a ‘massive, massive challenge’ 39
- Babcock wants to ‘put Canada’s team back on the map’ 48
- Flyers won’t trade Del Zotto, but ‘something will have to give’ on crowded blue line 26
- Reports: Sabres thought they had a deal with Babcock, aren’t happy (172)
- Leafs land Babcock with reported 8-year deal, estimated at $50 million (130)
- Russia to be punished for ‘completely out of order’ actions after Worlds final loss to Canada (91)
- Report: Sabres negotiating with Babcock (82)
- What’s wrong with Lundqvist? (70)