Hello everyone and welcome to another edition of Masala Monday. The last time I talked to you guys, our New Jersey Devils were just about to face the New York Rangers. We all know that series is history as the Devils are now in the Stanley Cup Finals against the Los Angeles Kings…with home ice! Before the puck drops on Wednesday night, let’s take a look at which performers have been contributing to New Jersey’s trip to the finals.
Ilya Kovalchuk – What a playoffs it has been for Kovy! What seemed like an iffy moment for his performance in Game 1 of the series vs. Philly was soon reversed. He has 11 goals and 7 assists, which leads the Devils. In addition, he leads everyone with 18 playoff points. I’m sure he’s gonna be hungry for a lot more since he’s literally waited his entire life for this moment.
Martin Brodeur – Marty has really stepped up his game! I don’t believe that the Devils would have beaten New York in 6 without some of Marty’s big plays. Each game included a highlight worthy of SportsCenter recognition. You guys tell me which save could be better than that scorpion stop. There’s no doubt in my mind he’ll continue his dominance against LA.
Adam Henrique – Wow can you believe this guy?! He’s beyond clutch! Henrique isn’t much of a goal scorer in these playoffs but he has assisted on many clutch plays. His assists are just as good as his goals. He doesn’t always score goals (queue the Dos Equis man), but when he does, he makes sure they’re series clinching overtime goals! Henrique’s Game 7 2OT goal in Florida and Game 6 OT goal vs. the Rangers are the reasons why the Devils are in a spot to capture Lord Stanley’s Cup.
The Devils 4th line – Yup! They’re doing work again! Boomer Esiason even mentioned on the Boomer and Carton show (660 WFAN/MSG weekdays from 6 AM – 10 AM) that the Devils’ 4th line of Ryan Carter, Stephen Gionta, and Steve Bernier were killing the Rangers! That’s not something we hear every day. I hope they can keep up the clutch scoring and intimidating presence for the Cup.
Marek Zidlicky – Disappointed to notice that he hasn’t carried his momentum from the Philly series up to now. I barely saw any progress from him against the Rangers. He passes a lot more than he should on power plays. I have a feeling that he and Kovalchuk should trade spots on the power play. I feel more confident about Kovy’s rifle down from the middle of the point rather than Zidlicky’s shot. You just might think that his “shot” is another way of saying slap pass.
Mark Fayne – At least I’ve heard Zidlicky’s name. Where has Fayne been though? I hope he’s not going to remain as a filler defenseman. In that case bring in Larsson because he’s faster and he does a lot more work in my opinion. Though if he starts making plays, the Kings will have a lot to handle on their plate.
Patrik Elias – I’m very well aware that he did score in a pivotal Game 5 at MSG. Nonetheless, we needed him to turn back the clock to his goal scoring days. Trust me though, if he does, then the Devils will have an offensive juggernaut that might not be stoppable. I’m eagerly waiting for that day but as of now, Elias has been a little too quiet.
As a team? I would say without a doubt the Devils are SPICY! After routing the New York Rangers in the Eastern Conference Finals, let’s hope the Devils can win it all over the Los Angeles Kings. 91% of people think LA will win but that’s our cue. The haters will hate and the Devils shall once again, shatter the words and predictions of critics…hopefully! Both teams will be coming off big breaks so if rust is an issue, it will affect both teams. If you don’t believe so, do share your views. You all can send me your views/criticisms via commenting or via tweeting.
For all the latest Devils news, follow us on twitter: @RWTDblog, @Rvaidya33, @RealScottRobb, and @DEVIN88MATTERA and you can like us on our Facebook page! So long for now – I’m Raj Vaidya, and hopefully this spice wasn’t too hot to handle! If you can, be sure to catch me at The Rock for Game 2 of the 2012 Stanley Cup Finals!