October 24, 2019 • NEW JERSEY DEVILS NEWS & CLIPS

October 24, 2019 • NEW JERSEY DEVILS NEWS & CLIPS

  1. SUMMARY
  2. LOCAL PRINT/WEB
  3. TV/VIDEO LINKS
  4. RADIO LINKS
  5. NATIONAL PRINT/WEB

1) SUMMARY

 

The Devils will face-off against the Arizona Coyotes tomorrow in their first head-to-head contest of the 2019-20 season at Prudential Center (7pm, MSG+, FS-A PLUS).

 

Abbey Mastracco, The Record, gave updates on the Devils prospects playing in the Western Hockey League, Ontario Hockey League and American Hockey League.

 

Chris Ryan, NJ.com, spoke to Devils head coach John Hynes about the teams plan for rookie Jesper Boqvist moving forward in the season.

 

“It’s something that we’d like to do, yes,” Devils coach John Hynes said. “I mean I don’t want to sit here and tell you that it’s for sure, but right now, our plan is, yes, to have him here.”

 

“It’s important to him and he’s played pretty well, and he’s a guy that we think is going to be able to progress,” Hynes said. “This is new for him. He’s in the NHL, he’s on a North American sheet. He’s practicing every day against these guys, he’s had opportunities to play. You talk to him, he’s like, ‘I learned something every day. If I play a game, I learned something every shift.’ And that’s invaluable.”

 

“I think it’s tough to say this earlier, how many games he’s going to play,” Hynes said. “Put it this way: There is a plan we have, but we’re not saying, ‘He needs to play this many games.’ I think it’s tough to say that this early on, but we do think he’s in the right place right now.

 

“We think he’s a good player. We think he’s a guy that can continue to get better, and we think this is the right environment for him to be able to continue to grow right now, and that’s what we’re doing. Some of that may be games, some of it might not be games, but that’s what we feel is best at this point.”

 

 

2) LOCAL PRINT/WEB

 

  1. NJ Devils prospect roundup: Ty Smith off to a hot start in WHL

By Abbey Mastracco, The Record

https://www.northjersey.com/story/sports/nhl/devils/2019/10/23/nj-devils-prospects-ty-smith-off-hot-start-whl/4050528002/

 

Ty Smith is back in business in Spokane, the Binghamton Devils’ season is underway and some future Devils are dominating in Ottawa.

 

Here’s a roundup of how some of the organization’s top talent is faring in their respective leagues this season.

 

Western Hockey League

 

(Spokane) D Ty Smith: 4 goals, 3 assists (7 points) in 7 games

 

The reigning WHL Defenseman of the Year is already making a strong case for his title defense. For the second year in a row, Smith, New Jersey’s first-round pick in the 2018 NHL Draft, was among the last to be cut out of training camp. His late birthday makes him ineligible for the American Hockey League so he was sent back to Spokane for another year of development.

 

The 19-year-old is not the kind of player to pout and remain angry at his situation. Clearly he hasn’t been, as the captain’s point-per-game clip would indicate.

 

 

Does this mean the Devils made a mistake by sending Smith back to his junior team? No, he was inconsistent at best during the preseason and did not show that he was better than Matt Tennyson, Mirco Mueller or Connor Carrick. With all of the defensive problems that have plagued the Devils this season an inexperienced defenseman like Smith would have just been a liability. Instead, Smith has another year to round out his game and become an asset.

 

Ontario Hockey League

 

(Ottawa) C Mitchell Hoelscher: 6 goals, 9 assists (15 points) in 11 games

 

(Ottawa) RW Graeme Clarke: 7 goals, 2 assists (9 points) in nine games

 

(Ottawa) D Nikita Okhotyuk: 0 points, 0 assists in 2 games

 

(Kitchener) D Michael Vukojevic: 0 goals, 4 assists (4 points) in 11 games

 

The Ottawa 67s have already been struggling offensively and now they’ll be without one of their top forwards in Graeme Clarke, a third-rounder taken by New Jersey this year. Clarke was on pace for 52 goals this season before aggravating a shoulder injury two weeks ago. The torn labrum in his left shoulder will require surgery and he’ll be out for four months or more. Even after missing the last two games, he’s still the 67s’ leading scorer with a team-leading seven goals (nine points).

 

Hoelscher, who is tied for the team lead with 15 points, will overtake him soon enough.

 

Okhotyuk, Hoelscher’s roommate last season, missed the first nine games of the season with a broken finger, but the mobile defenseman returned Oct. 15.

 

Vukojevic, who ended Devils’ development camp with a fancy trick shot that had the crowd roaring, is still putting those fancy moves on OHL opponents.

 

European Leagues

 

(SWE) C/LW Nikola Pasic: 3 goals, 7 assists (10 points) in 11 games

 

Pasic’s early-season production for BIK Karlskoga of Allsvenskan, the second-highest tier in Sweden, could have him promoted to the SHL at some point this season. A spot on the national team roster for the IIHF World Junior Championships could be on the horizon as well.

 

American Hockey League

 

The Binghamton Devils haven’t gotten off to a great start. They have a lot of emerging young talent but a 1-3-2 record to start led the club to form a leadership group of AHL veterans. Ben Street was named captain Wednesday with Julian Melchiori, Dakota Mermis and Chris Connor named alternate captains. None were drafted by the Devils. They were all brought in to provide leadership, so it makes sense that they’re in this position but still, it’s a little surprising there aren’t any homegrown players in this group.

 

But the homegrown forwards like Joey Anderson, Brett Seney, Michael McLeod, Nathan Bastian and Marian Studenic are knocking at the door of the NHL. The big club in Newark hasn’t had any injuries up front yet so no reinforcements have been needed anywhere other than the blue line, and Matt Tennyson filled that spot.

 

That said, all of those players are producing offensively. Seney leads the team with seven points and Anderson’s two goals and three assists in six games is a promising start for a player the Devils wanted to see more offense from.

 

  1. How Nico Hischier’s contract extension affects Devils’ salary cap situation next season

By Chris Ryan, NJ.com

https://www.nj.com/devils/2019/10/how-nico-hischiers-contract-extension-affects-devils-salary-cap-situation-in-2020-21.html

 

Nico Hischier secured his future with the Devils when he signed a seven-year, $50.75 million contract extension. Barring a trade, he’ll wear red and black for at least the first 10 years of his NHL career.

 

In paying him that salary now, the Devils are banking on Hischier’s continued development, and as someone who won’t turn 21 until January, there’s still plenty of room for growth in the 2017 No. 1 overall pick.

 

But this story isn’t about Hischier and his deal. It’s about how the contract affects everything else the Devils will be able to do in the confines of the salary cap starting next season.

 

Having Hischier locked up now, rather than signing him to a new contract in the summer of 2020 as a restricted free agent, gives the Devils more cost certainty regarding the cap and the other moves they’ll need to make in June and July.

 

With Hischier’s contract on the books for 2020-21, the Devils will have $53,383,333 committed toward the cap based on their current contracts, per Cap Friendly. Their current 2019-20 payroll is at $76,621,935, with the difference set to come off the books at the end of the season.

 

The current NHL salary cap is at $81.5 million, though that will likely go up a bit before next season. So they’ll have $28,116,667 available to spend in the summer, plus the cap increase.

 

It certainly looks like a lot, but other players are going to need to be paid. The biggest question mark is Taylor Hall, who could be looking at $11 or $12 million per season if he re-signs with the Devils on a long-term contract.

 

If Hall ends up signing elsewhere, all of this becomes moot, because the Devils will have more than enough cap space to spread around. But if he stays, they’ll need to carefully navigate their other pending free agents.

 

Captain Andy Greene is in the final year of his contract that pays him $5 million per season. The $5 million contract of forward Wayne Simmonds and the $4.875 million AAV of defenseman Sami Vatanen also expire this season. Jesper Bratt and Mackenzie Blackwood finish their entry-level contracts in 2019-20, so they’ll likely be in line for raises on their next deals in the summer as RFAs. John Hayden ($750K), Kevin Rooney ($700K) and Mirco Mueller ($1.4 million) will also be free agents.

 

In short, it will probably be difficult for the Devils to retain all of them, though Blackwood and Bratt aren’t going anywhere.

 

Plenty will change between now and when decisions on those players need to be made in June and July, but having Hischier’s contract done now will give the Devils a much clearer picture of the money they have available to sign other players around him.

 

  1. What’s the Devils’ plan for Jesper Boqvist?

By Chris Ryan, NJ.com

https://www.nj.com/devils/2019/10/whats-the-devils-plan-for-jesper-boqvist.html

 

Jesper Boqvist has played in two of the Devils’ first eight games of the season. That might prompt one to think the Devils might ultimately send him back to Sweden, since he’s ineligible to play in the AHL this season due to his European contract.

 

However, the Devils’ hope and expectation at this point is to keep Boqvist in the NHL for the entire 2019-20 campaign.

 

“It’s something that we’d like to do, yes,” Devils coach John Hynes said. “I mean I don’t want to sit here and tell you that it’s for sure, but right now, our plan is, yes, to have him here.”

 

The 2017 second-round pick and 20-year-old is still developing as a player, and this is his first season playing on the smaller rink of North American hockey. So the Devils have been deliberate about rushing him into a full-time role.

 

Sitting games might seem counterintuitive to Boqvist’s development when he could be playing full time in Sweden, but at this point, the Devils see it more beneficial for him to be in this role with the NHL club.

 

“It’s important to him and he’s played pretty well, and he’s a guy that we think is going to be able to progress,” Hynes said. “This is new for him. He’s in the NHL, he’s on a North American sheet. He’s practicing every day against these guys, he’s had opportunities to play. You talk to him, he’s like, ‘I learned something every day. If I play a game, I learned something every shift.’ And that’s invaluable.”

 

Essentially, Boqvist is still on the NHL roster because the Devils see him making an impact this season.

 

Part of Boqvist’s value comes from his range. If the Devils called up a current forward from Binghamton in the AHL, that player would likely slot into one of the team’s bottom two lines. Boqvist could currently fill a bottom-six role, like he’s done in the two games he’s played, but the Devils view his current ceiling as higher than that. If they needed a player to step into a top-six spot or help the power play, Boqvist could do it.

 

So his games will steadily increase if the Devils see him continue to progress. The team, however, doesn’t have a certain number of games they need Boqvist to clear.

 

“I think it’s tough to say this earlier, how many games he’s going to play,” Hynes said. “Put it this way: There is a plan we have, but we’re not saying, ‘He needs to play this many games.’ I think it’s tough to say that this early on, but we do think he’s in the right place right now.

 

“We think he’s a good player. We think he’s a guy that can continue to get better, and we think this is the right environment for him to be able to continue to grow right now, and that’s what we’re doing. Some of that may be games, some of it might not be games, but that’s what we feel is best at this point.”

 

  1. PROSPECT REPORT: Smith Gearing up for Canada-Russia Series

By Peter Robinson, newjerseydevils.com

https://www.nhl.com/devils/news/prospect-report-smith-gearing-up-for-canada-russia-series/c-310413584?tid=277567796

 

Ty Smith is re-asserting his position as the best defenseman in Canadian major junior hockey.

 

The 19-year-old from Saskatoon, Sask., was sent back to the Western Hockey League’s Spokane Chiefs on the eve of the Devils season opener. His first week back in Spokane saw him pick up WHL player of the week honors and he has settled in at a point-a-game pace through seven games (4A, 3G).

 

“Things are going good,” said the 19-year-old, “we have had some injuries, waiting on some guys to return and are .500. When we start to get back (to full strength) I think we’ll be where we want to be.”

 

The Chiefs are not currently featured in the Canadian Hockey League’s top 10 rankings but generally considered to be a WHL contender, especially after Smith was returned.

 

Smith was picked by the Devils 17th overall at the 2018 NHL Draft, sandwiched between No. 1s Nico Hischier in 2017 and Jack Hughes’ selection in June. And while winning the Draft lottery tends to get most of the attention, Smith became perhaps the most notable non-lottery Devils prospect in the pipeline after his 2018-19 season.

 

That’s because he won both the WHL and CHL defenseman of the year award. Smith’s name is now on a list that includes current NHL defensemen Thomas Chabot (Ottawa), Ivan Provorov (Philadelphia), Dougie Hamilton (Carolina) and Ryan Ellis (Nashville), who have all won it in recent years.

 

Smith’s being sent back was the source of some consternation for Devils fans, who had assumed that his outstanding season in Spokane made making the Devils this season a natural progression. That is not an unreasonable sentiment but it tends to ignore the fact that the path to becoming a full-time NHLer rarely follows a straight line, especially for a defenseman. To wit, only Provorov among former CHL award winners listed above played in the NHL as a teenager.

 

For his part, Smith was circumspect and sounded as though he was now well over any disappointment.

 

“I got the opportunity, got into exhibition games,” he points out, “it doesn’t feel good to get cut. But I have a chance to come back to Spokane and to learn, to grow for another year.”

 

That growth will see Smith again wearing a maple leaf across his chest. Smith already has a track record representing his country in international competition, dating back to the 2016 Youth Olympics. Since then he has twice competed in the World U18s and last year in the World Junior Championship. If healthy, he is expected to be a leader on Team Canada this year in the Czech Republic. He could wear a letter on his sweater when the tournament gets underway on Dec. 26 against the U.S.

 

In the meantime, Smith is expected to serve as one of Team WHL’s captains when it plays two games against Russia during the Canada Russia Series next month.

 

“Ty Smith is going to be a big part of our team,” said Team Canada GM Mark Hunter, the former Toronto Maple Leafs assistant GM who has returned to junior hockey with the London Knights, the OHL club that he co-owns with brother, Dale, who will serve as Canada’s head coach.

 

“He and (Detroit Red Wings prospect) Joe Veleno were there last year and wouldn’t have liked how it ended. We’ll be counting on them to lead us.”

 

Hunter is referring to Canada’s loss in overtime to Finland in Vancouver last year; Canada coughed up a 1-0 lead in the final minute and then lost when the Finns scored after they reversed a broken-stick play at the other end of the ice to stun the arena and shock the entire country tuning in on television.

 

The quarter-final exit left Canada in sixth-place; Finland later beat Hughes and the U.S. for gold.

 

Canada’s interest with the World Junior is roughly akin to bowl season in the U.S., coming as it does during the holiday season. Canadian players often cite playing in the World Junior as a career highlight but the honor can be a double-edged sword when results don’t go their way.

 

“It was still a great experience,” said Smith, “I’m looking forward to getting another opportunity especially with what happened last year. We weren’t happy with the result.”

 

  1. BLOG: Brodeur Inducted into Canada’s Sports HOF

By Staff Writer, newjerseydevils.com

https://www.nhl.com/devils/news/prospect-report-smith-gearing-up-for-canada-russia-series/c-310413584?tid=277567796

 

TORONTO, ON – On Wednesday, Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame honored its Class of 2019 Inductees, and Devils great Martin Brodeur was among them.

 

Brodeur won three Stanley Cup Championships and earned the Vezina Trophy four times as the NHL’s best goaltender.

 

NewJerseyDevils.com was on location in Toronto and provided the following coverage of the event.

 

3) TV/VIDEO LINKS

 

  1. JERSEY LIFE | INFINITI Red Carpet

By New Jersey Devils, newjerseydevils.com

https://www.nhl.com/devils/video/jersey-life–infiniti-red-carpet/t-277437418/c-4422048

 

  1. REPORT | Brodeur Inducted

By New Jersey Devils, newjerseydevils.com

https://www.nhl.com/devils/video/report–brodeur-inducted/t-277437418/c-69807803

 

  1. 1-ON-1 | Martin Brodeur

By New Jersey Devils, newjerseydevils.com

https://www.nhl.com/devils/video/1-on-1–martin-brodeur/t-277437418/c-69805803

 

  1. RAW | Brodeur Canada’s Sports HoF

By New Jersey Devils, newjerseydevils.com

https://www.nhl.com/devils/video/raw–brodeur-canadas-sports-hof/t-277437418/c-69805703

 

4) RADIO LINKS – N/A

5) NATIONAL PRINT/WEB

 

  1. Attention to detail(s): The process behind the Devils’ pregame hype video, plus notes from extended practice

By Corey Masisak, The Athletic

https://theathletic.com/1317641/2019/10/23/attention-to-details-the-process-behind-the-devils-in-game-hype-videos-plus-notes-from-extended-practice/

 

The first email gets sent in mid-June, and what follows is dozens of meetings, hours of brainstorming, execution and editing and a race to the finish line.

 

The end product is a video designed to fire up the crowd and set the stage for the Devils’ entrance at Prudential Center. It’s a process that involves a lot of people inside the organization and becomes a signature part of the game-day presentation.

 

Ben Broder, vice president of marketing experience for the Devils, spearheads the team in charge of creating New Jersey’s pregame intro video. But a number of employees across departments play a role in helping the video go from the first ideas in the middle of the summer to what Devils fans see just before the team skates onto the ice at The Rock.

 

“Ben’s job is tough because he’s got this tiny window to sort of set the tone and to amplify the energy, but also to tell the story of a number of sort of different faces that might not be familiar to a lot of the fans that are coming into the building,” said Jillian Frechette, senior marketer for the Devils’ managing partners, Harris Blitzer Sports & Entertainment. “And he has to squish all of that into however many minutes that video plays. We introduce our fans to different players and give them a sense of who they are and what they look like without their masks.”

 

Broder’s team works with Frechette’s group, hockey operations and an outside firm to create an idea based around the team’s marketing campaign for the season. The next step is to put together a video that mixes highlights of goals, hits and saves and fits the narrative Broder’s team wants to tell.

 

The marketing campaign for the 2019-20 season is centered around the slogan “We are the ones.” Frechette said the process of landing on a new campaign starts with about a month to go in the season prior.

 

“That’s a collaborative effort,” she said. “We finalize things in the summertime. There are many meetings, many discussions. I think the piece that was really important is it was multi-dimensional. We had to land on something that you could see from different perspectives. ‘We are the ones’ became really important to us, because we could see it through the lens of alumni, we could see it through the lens of a current fan, we could see it through the lens of a future fan.

 

“If it’s an individual shot, if it’s Jack (Hughes), perhaps it is, ‘We’re the ones that will change the game.’ When you think about it through the lens of alumni and it’s Marty (Brodeur), perhaps it’s, ‘We’re the ones that changed the game’ or ‘We’re the ones that hoisted three Cups.’ And then we really love the ones that are aligned with with younger fans that we’re pretty excited about. We’ve got some great images and we love to use the the line, ‘We’re the ones that dare to dream big.’

 

With that marketing idea as the foundation, Broder’s team captured video of players saying various phrases that start with “We are the ones.” The main day of shooting is scheduled for Media Day, when the players suit up in full gear and the Devils’ practice rink is turned into an on-ice movie set.

 

“One of the really important pieces about this campaign is it’s reflective of us in our home,” Frechette said. “We initially had one of our creative people who is a photographer go out and take a bunch of imagery of Newark. I had sent them on this wild goose chase for images of bricks because that was really important to me, but they also took a lot of interesting shots of urban buildings and cement. So our campaign is grounded with bricks, or a nod to our home, which is Newark.

 

“And then bricks also speaks to what our good friends in hockey operations have built in the last little while. Ray (Shero) and his colleagues have built this team brick-by-brick.”

 

Besides creating a script and shooting the players on media day, Broder’s team also has to pick out the highlights for the video. This year’s portion is set to Shinedown’s “Devil” and includes some signature moments, like Taylor Hall’s goal against Ottawa last season after Sami Vatanen’s goal-mouth save at the other end, and Pavel Zacha’s great individual effort in the season finale against the Panthers.

 

It also includes a few clips from this past postseason, like Wayne Simmonds pointing at the Rangers’ Ryan Lidgren after a confrontation and Nikita Gusev scoring at Madison Square Garden. The final highlight of the video is Hughes’ preseason goal against the Rangers at Prudential Center.

 

“There’s a lot of things left on the cutting room floor, but certain highlights or certain reactions just totally stick out to you, right?” Broder said. “I mean, in that scenario, you probably couldn’t write that one any better as a Devils fan. That one happened to be the perfect combination of the opponent it was against, it’s a great celebration and the fans going nuts. It just hit multiple pillars as to why we should choose that highlight.”

 

They also have to build the video in a way that highlights can be added as the season progresses. Goals like Blake Coleman’s one-handed tally scored on opening night and Hughes’ first official NHL goal against the Canucks from this past weekend could find their way in.

 

“You have to leave yourself open to be able to do that because you want to be in the moment,” Broder said. “You want to be able to capitalize and amplify moments that happen throughout the season. We’re ready to react and get that right into the open on the spot. Because you just have to do that in in today’s market, especially in sports, like people want it now.”

 

The Devils have kept the video from last season, with polaroid photos set to Pink Floyd’s “Dark Side of the Moon,” to start the full pregame experience. Then there are the staples throughout the game — the Rick Flair video, the various references to David Puddy’s Devils fandom on “Seinfeld.”

 

“I think our game-day crew does a great job of getting the fans going,” said Hall, whose love of the Flair montage has been incorporated into the short video this season.

 

Broder said it’s hard to pick a favorite from the pregame hype videos he’s worked on, but the video with Ken Daneyko from the 2017-18 season stands out.

 

“I really enjoyed that one because of the process of working on it. Just being behind the scenes with him, trying to nail those takes and, like, the passion and energy and emotion he had telling the stories to get to the right energy for what we needed to be on the board,” Broder said. “But then just the side stories he would tell just about everything that we didn’t necessarily know. He was like, ‘You all didn’t know that such and such played this game with a broken leg’ in between takes. That was a fun production to put together.”

 

“Every time I watched the one with (Daneyko), I was ready to run through walls,” team president Jake Reynolds said. “Dano has the ability to do that, whether it’s on a video board or on the golf course or in the office. It’s what makes him ‘Mr. Devil.’

 

“I think the one thread that you see that goes through all of these is storytelling, I think these two (Broder and Frechette) are the best in the world at what they do in terms of being able to actually tell the story of “We are the ones who …” and then be able to tell a story based off of that. … There are key pieces of that, whether it’s social, whether it’s billboards, or when you come in, it’s the show that is put on in the arena and the engagement that we have with our fans. When they sit in their seat, and they see those videos, they know the show is about to start and it draws them in.”

 

The plan for fixing the biggest problems

The Devils have some extra time this week with no games between this past Saturday against the Canucks and Friday against the Coyotes at Prudential Center. That gave the coaching staff time to assess some of the issues that ailed the club during its slow start and to work on the solutions in practice.

 

One of the Devils’ biggest problems has been getting the puck cleanly out of the defensive zone. Ideally, the Devils would like to leave their zone in possession of the puck so they have a better chance of creating offense at the other end. But New Jersey has struggled at times to get it out by any means.

 

“We’ll comb through (the breakout clips) and say, ‘OK, is our support where it needs to be in the structure? Are the wings high? Is the center available? Did the defensemen know what outs are available? What’s the best play? Is it weak-side rim? Is it not?’ As coaches, you come in and look at the decisions and the structure. If it’s a structural thing, you want to fix that. Then it comes to the decisions. And then you’re educating the players and saying, ‘These are the habits we need.’ Do we need more support in certain areas of the ice?

 

“Some of that has come back to basic execution where there is an opportunity to make a tape-to-tape pass and we don’t. It’s not really one thing. It’s trying to figure out what it is. Sometimes it is execution. Sometimes it could be the attention to detail with the structure and then other times it is our decisions. And … we’ve had some time here now to really work through all of it.”

 

One area of focus this week at practice has been the team’s play along the boards in its own zone. It hasn’t always been the first pass or first decision that has plagued the Devils’ efforts. It’s the second, which often involves a wing player along the wall, that’s been the point of breakdown on several occasions.

 

“For us, we don’t have big wingers, right?” Hynes said. “So sometimes when the play is along the wall, we’ve got to do a better job on wall play, to either chip it out or come back to the puck a little bit and hit an underneath defenseman or hit our center underneath to be able to come out of the zone with possession.”

 

Another trouble area has been unforced errors. There will be times when the puck bounces over a player’s stick or rolls at an inopportune time and the pass goes awry. But the Devils have had too many slips despite minimal pressure from the opposition.

 

“There’s probably been 10-to-12 in almost every game we’ve played in where we’ve had one forechecker on us and had a clear opportunity to make a decision, wheel it out, make a quick-up pass or move and we haven’t done it,” Hynes said. “Those are the ones you have to win. If a team is in a full, structured forecheck, it is hard to get out. It is hard. But there is probably 10-12 where we should be up and out of your zone a lot easier. And some of that is either support or execution.”

 

All of the problems in the defensive zone have cut down on their time at the other end. They’ve had too many shifts where the forwards have to dump the puck and go for a line change, or fire the puck at the goaltender and head for the bench.

 

The whole cycle of events has led to the Devils being one of the worst teams in the league in Corsi for percentage — or in the share of total shot attempts — at even strength. It’s also limiting the team’s ability to create great scoring chances.

 

“We’ve been a lot of one and done,” Hynes said. “We’re a team that we have to play quick and fast and shoot pucks and recover pucks. We’re not going to be a team that’s going to grind it in the corner if you look at our makeup. But we also can’t be in the corner and throw the puck in the slot and take ourselves out of the offense. We’ve got to move it low-to-high to get a shot, use our speed to recover, maybe beat a guy out of the corner, use the back of the net more. We’ve got to get the other team on the run more and a lot of that has been our puck decisions.

 

“Sometimes I think we want to score right away, and that’s where you’ve got to be able to get in (the zone) and get some shots and make the team defend a bit and that’s when things will open up.”

 

The plan for Jesper Boqvist

Boqvist has played in only two of the first eight games of the season, but the Devils’ plan — for now, at least — is to keep him with the club for the entire season. He has a contract with Brynas in the Swedish Hockey League, and the only out clause is for him to for New Jersey, so sending him to Binghamton to get some extra game action isn’t currently an option.

 

“He’s a guy who has played pretty well, and he’s a guy that we think is going to be able to progress,” Hynes said. “This is new for him. He’s in the NHL. He’s on a North American sheet. He’s practicing against these guys. He’s had a couple chances to play. When you talk to him, he says, ‘I’m learning something everyday. When I play, I learn something every shift.’ That’s invaluable.”

 

Hynes said they would like Boqvist to stick with the Devils, but that it’s not a certainty. He also reiterated that the Devils haven’t set a minimum number of games for Boqvist this season.

 

“Let’s put it this way: There is a plan that we have, but we’re not setting it as, ‘OK, this is how many games he needs to play,’” Hynes said. “It’s tough to say how many it will be, but we do think he’s in the right place.

 

“I think he’s a good player. I think he’s a he’s a guy that can continue to get better. We think this is the right environment for him to able to continue to grow. Some of that is going to be games. Some of it might not be games, but that’s what we feel is best for him right now.”

 

The plan for Taylor Hall

The Devils have been closely monitoring Hall’s early-season progress after he missed the second half of last season with a knee injury. He’s played in every game and leads the Devils’ forwards in ice time per contest, but the Devils are also giving him days off, or “maintenance days,” when they think he needs them.

 

He took off Monday, the first day of practice this week, and had taken a maintenance day in between games last week, as well.

 

“We talked prior to the season on (the plan to give him some extra rest) and then I talk to him fairly regularly, but we also have our sports medicine guys and I deal with them all the time, too,” Hynes said. “If I’m not around, (Hall) might talk to them. I meet with those guys at the end of every day anyways for an assessment of every player and where we are at going into the next day. For him, it’s a little more of here is what our team is going to do and what he may or may not need, and then we just discuss it.”

 

This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s