Thursday, November 16, 2006


Fahey Waived, Julien Criticized

Mark Everson of the NY Post reported today that Devils defenseman Jim Fahey has been placed on waivers to make room for defenseman David Hale. I checked for any transaction news, and Fahey was not claimed by any other NHL teams; so I assume he will be assigned to Lowell. While Fahey had a number of good games and is a servicable #7 defenseman, the imminent return of David Hale is nothing but good news for the Devils and their blueline. Hale is young, but he will develop into a steady stay-at-home defenseman. Fahey would likely remain on the roster, but as Everson correctly notes, the salary cap forced this move.

Tom Gulitti's post game article in the Bergen Record highlights a team concern with Devils coach Claude Julien. Rich Chere's article in the Star Ledger also highlights similar concerns, but with more player quotes. Both are worth reading. Julien's decision to leave the top line out against Jagr's unit, leaving the Madden line on the bench was certainly questionable. Jay Pandolfo did very well shadowing and containing Jaromir Jagr all game, why did he not put them out there after the first or second goals? On the other hand, Devils hockey maintains that no matter who you are, if you're a Devil, you better be responsible defensively. Elias was correct to admit that his line dropped the ball and took responsibility for the 90 seconds of defensive lapses (quote from the Chere article):
"Listen, the coach makes a decision," Elias said. "The guys who are out there (which included himself) have a job to do. Pando did a great job all night but our line should've done a better job. The coach took a lot of blame, but the bottom line is we should've played better."

Coach Julien is also correct to state that focus is already on the next game, the Devils' home game against the Ottawa Senators. A team, I sadly remember, who destroyed NJ 8-1 in their last meeting (quote is from the Gulitti article):
"[Tuesday] we lost a game, we learned from it, we turn the page and we've got to think about the next game," Julien said. "The longer we dwell on this, the less time we have to prepare for Ottawa."
Chere's article also notes in the end that it won't be until after the Ottawa game as to whether Martin Brodeur plays on both Friday's and Saturday's games. I think he'll play against Ottawa for sure. The Gulitti article states at the end that the Devils annual food drive takes place on Friday. If you're going to the game, please bring some non-perishible food; some families could really use it.

IN OTHER NHL NEWS: The NHL struck up a deal with YouTube for content and advertisments. This is a good move by both parties, it further legitimizes YouTube and the NHL can take advantage of the large user community YouTube has got going for it. I got this from reading Off Wing Opinion, the best hockey blog on the Internet(tm). He even has this cool thing on his main page called Blinx, which links to a number of NHL related videos at once.

Evgeni Malkin will remain in Pittsburgh, to the delight of Penguins fans and probably Malkin himself. The NHL has it's official reaction right here.

The Central Scouting Service has announced it's preliminary rankings for the 2007 NHL Draft. The article and links to the ranking lists are right here. It's more of a watch list and it's organized by league. Angelo Esposito, Sam Gagner, and Keaton Ellerby lead the QMJHL, OHL, and WHL leagues' lists respectively.

I forget what article I was reading, but Brodeur was critical of Julien for not having Pandolfo on the ice at the time the Rangers went wild.
That was the Chere article, I think. That's true, Brodeur wasn't so up front about it but it was a subtle remark about seeing Pandolfo on the bench.

Again, the Devils have to focus on tonight's game - criticizing or dwelling on previous games won't change their result.
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