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Scouting the Enemy: New Jersey Devils


: 14-8-2

Leading scorers: Zach Parise (15G, 13A, 28pts), Patrick Elias (10G, 14A, 24pts)

Blogs: In Lou We Trust

The following is courtesy of John from In Lou We Trust

Gulitti says expect Clemmensen tonight and why not?  He's been great since the Pittsburgh loss, only conceding a total of 3 goals to Philadelphia and Montreal combined.  That's 54 saves on a total of 57 shots on the road against some mighty good teams.  Crosby's lighting up of Clemmensen didn't destroy his confidence and he's got some momentum before facing him and Malkin again tomorrow.  I think Clemmensen will have a better game tomorrow than he did on saturday.

Brian Rolston returned to game action on Thursday against Philadelphia and looked, well, rusty.  He looked more like himself against Montreal on Saturday. He's back and as he gets more, well, back, we'll start seeing more productive hockey out of him.  The top two lines for the Devils have been excellent as of late and so Sutter isn't going to break up Elias-Zubrus-Gionta or Parise-Zajac-Langenbrunner.  Rolston has been featured at right wing with John Madden and Jay Pandolfo, but he's getting minutes on the power play at the point.  So you'll see a good bit of him.  Bobby Holik returned to action on Saturday in Montreal and looked OK in limited minutes on the fourth line.  He didn't play more than 5 minutes, but he looked decent enough.  Like Rolston, as Holik gets more playing time, he'll become more noticeable and able to contribute more to the team.

As far as the Devils as a whole, they won two big games in overtime over Philadelphia and Montreal on the road.  Elias picked up a late equalizer and a game-winner in OT; and the Devils steadily got better as the game against Montreal won and cashed in when Elias set up Parise for a PPG in OT.  The Devils are really coming together in terms of chemistry that the returns of Rolston and Holik haven't disrupted the performances too much.  OK, they aren't scoring tons of goals, but they are doing a better job at keeping the opposition honest and they are getting results.  7 wins out of their last 8 and it'd be nice if the Devils get a little revenge this week against teams who have beaten them the last time they played (Pittsburgh, Rangers, Sabres).