These are the words echoed by Devils coach (for the time being anyway) Brent Sutter. He gave the Devils the day off on Sunday to rest, but the Devils came out Monday night against the Pittsburgh Penguins flat.
Although some blame it on poor coaching, poor goaltending, and poor officiating, fact of the matter is this was a team wide failure. No aspect of this game went well.
You can’t pin the blame on just one game, either. This is the fourth time in 14 games that the Devils have been shut out. What’s so unfortunate about this is the fact that the Devils have a brand new home which can draw well, but producing a struggling team like this is going to seriously detract from fans coming out to games, especially since ticket prices are so much higher.
Now I’m no one to panic, but this is looking pretty bad for the Devils right now. One thing the Devils also were known for in their “modern” era is the fact that key players could move or be lost and the team would still operate well as someone else took their place. It appears as if now that is no longer the case. The Devils have lost too many “key” players over the past 4 years to be able to stay competitive. I can’t blame new coach Brent Sutter when the team is missing so much talent it once had, plus the loss of Colin White and Jamie Langenbrunner due to injury.
Only 14 teams don’t make it in to the playoffs. If the Devils don’t start seriously looking to acquire some anchor players, we may be clawing tooth and nail for the remainder of the season to get out of one of those 14 spots.