Eastern Conference Finals Game 4 Preview: Devils Look to Even Up the Series

2012 Stanley Cup Playoffs, Eastern Conference Finals

Stanley Cup Playoffs: Round 3
New York Rangers at New Jersey Devils
8:00 P.M. ET
TV: NBCSN
Radio: Bloomberg 1130 AM

Well, here we are again, down 2-1 in a series, but still with a fighting chance. It’s a best of 7 for a reason, but when you’re dominating the games and not putting up goals, it’s frustrating. Yet, here the Devils sit, heading into Game 4 tonight, down in the series.

For tonight’s game, Pete DeBoer has decided to shake up the lines a bit and Jacob Josefson will make his first playoff appearance. That leaves veteran Petr Sykora on the outside looking in.  It seems the fans have been torn about this decision. On one hand you have Sykora’s experience and presence, but on the other hand you have a rookie that will bring fresh legs to the line-up. Hopefully Josefson is ready to bring his A-Game because the Devils need it.

Speaking of bringing their A-Game, has anyone seen Patrik Elias? For someone known for his playoff experience and clutch performances, he has come up short in this series so far with 0 goals, 0 assists and a -3. Overall in this postseason, he’s collected just 5 points, 3 goals and 2 assists.  The Devils need more from him if they are going to tie this series up.

And then we have Zach Parise. The Devils Captain refused to speak to the media after Saturday’s game, which is very unlike him, but he’s clearly frustrated.  He also does not have any goals in the series, and hasn’t scored in the last 5 games, but I feel like it’s just one shot over Henrik Lundqvist’s glove that breaks open the scoring tonight.

Now on the other side of the ice, the New York Rangers will be without Brandon Prust as he’s been suspended one game for an elbow to the head of Anton Volchenkov during Saturday’s game.  John Tortorella has decided to go with Stu Bickel in his place for tonight’s game. Also to note, Ryan Callahan’s wife gave birth to their first child today, so it’ll be interesting to see what kind of game he’ll bring to the table tonight. He’s been pretty quiet so far, save for the empty net goal at the end of Game 3, so for the Devils, that’s a good thing.

As previously stated the last time we were down in a playoff series, (and it’s something no one wants to think about it), this could potentially be the final home games in Devils jersey for Zach Parise and Martin Brodeur. I’m not sure about you, but I know I’m not ready for that!  So, let’s do this Devils.  Let’s win this game and force a Game 6!  I haven’t stopped believing and neither should you!

ONE SHIFT AT A TIME, ONE PERIOD AT TIME, and ONE GAME AT TIME… LET’S DO THIS DEVILS!!

Devils’ projected lineup:

Parise – Zajac – Zubrus

Elias –  Henrique – Kovalchuk

Ponikarovsky – Josefson – Clarkson

Carter – Gionta – Bernier

Greene – Fayne

Salvador – Zidlicky

Volchenkov – Harrold

Brodeur

Hedberg

Rangers’ projected lineup:

Hagelin – Richards – Gaborik

Kreider – Stepan – Callahan

Anisimov – Boyle – Bickel

Fedotenko – Mitchell – Rupp

McDonagh – Girardi

Del Zotto – Eminger

Staal – Stralman

Lundqvist

Biron

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Posted on May 21, 2012, in Devils Army, Devils Army Generals, Game Preview, New Jersey Devils, New Jersey Devils Fans, NHL, NHL Playoffs, Prudential Center, The Rock and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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