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Influx of offense allowed Devils to “loosen up a bit,” says Lamoriello

May 29, 2012, 5:56 PM EDT

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Lou Lamoriello Getty Images

Washington Capitals fans might be interested to hear what Devils GM Lou Lamoriello said today when asked why his team was now “entertaining as heck to watch.”

The question was a bit of a backhanded compliment to be sure, but I guess it’s better than asking why his old New Jersey teams were so boring.

So what happened? Did the current group of players tell him they wanted to play a more dynamic, attacking style?

No, said Lamoriello – they didn’t need to. Their “styles sort of really told us, without saying anything, that we should. I think I felt it. With the young players, we had [Jacob Josefson, Travis Zajac, Zach Parise, Ilya Kovalchuk], you have to give them what they have.”

And if there weren’t those types of players, Lamoriello said the Devils would play the style that suits them best.

“We’re going to do whatever we need to do to win and we’re not going to apologize for it,” he said.

Of course, the Capitals have been saying pretty much the same thing since they made the decision to play more conservatively. If they think stapling Alex Ovechkin to the bench when protecting a lead is the way to go, then that’s what they’ll do.

The difference is, Lamoriello chose to let his best players dictate the overarching style instead of shoehorning them into a system that limits their weaknesses.

“It was time to loosen up a bit,” he said.

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