Jun 1, 2012, 6:55 PM EST
Ilya Kovalchuk wasn’t much of a factor in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup finals and Kings defenseman Drew Doughty deserves some of the credit for that. As we previously reported, the Devils aren’t going to shy away from that matchup.
“In order to get (Kovalchuk) away (from Doughty and Scuderi), we’re going to have to get away from a four-line game, which has been our strength,” Devils coach Peter DeBoer said. “If they’re matching up against Kovalchuk, then they’re not matching up against (Zach) Parise or other guys.”
Kovalchuk seems to be comfortable with the Devils’ plan.
“I don’t really care who I play against, we just have to work as a line, actually a five-man unit because that’s when we’re successful,” Kovalchuk said. “In the third we started moving the puck and we started forechecking better. It doesn’t really matter who you’re playing against, you just have to be on top of your game and let them make decisions.
“I’ve played against some good Ds and figured out how to go through them by doing the things I’m supposed to do. That’s what I will try to do next game.”
Naturally, if the Devils strategy doesn’t work out in Game 2 on Saturday, DeBoer might change his tune. He has embraced significant changes in the past, particularly in the Eastern Conference finals following their shutout losses against New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist in Games 1 and 3.
- Video: Couture fined $5K for slew-footing Smith 22
- Time to start winning — Bruins’ next four games are against non-playoff teams 17
- Burgled: Sens’ Hammond shuts out Kings 14
- Wild get important win vs. Preds (and some luck, too) 41
- Trading baggage: Blue Jackets grab Clarkson, send Horton’s contract to Leafs 66
- Panthers acquire Jagr from Devils 29
- Trotz doesn’t see a ‘big, sexy, difference-maker guy’ on the market 17
- What’s up with the reports of problems in the Blackhawks’ room? 40
- Petrovic: Chicago will ‘probably seek revenge’ for Kane injury tonight 82
- Lombardi happy to get ‘one of the better defenseman on the market’ in Sekera 3
- Petrovic: Chicago will ‘probably seek revenge’ for Kane injury tonight (82)
- ‘I don’t know why we’re so comfortable,’ says Toews after loss to Avalanche (69)
- Report: Alex Petrovic avoids discipline after injuring Patrick Kane (68)
- Trading baggage: Blue Jackets grab Clarkson, send Horton’s contract to Leafs (66)
- Lindros files $3M defamation lawsuit against ex-referee Stewart (Updated: Now $250K) (65)