Can’t fault the New Jersey Devils goaltending on this one.
Devils goaltender Jon Gillies made 22 saves but gave up a game winning Mathew Barzal goal with 4:53 left in the third period. Gillies, who was thrusted into the starting lineup after Mackenzie Blackwood and Akira Schmid entered the COVID-19 protocol, played well in his second game with the Devils.
Things I Liked:
1. Nathan Bastian executing his assignments on the power play and getting rewarded for his efforts with a goal. He needs to continue with his physical presence and can make a good living in front of the crease. He is starting to remind me of three time Stanley Cup champion Patrick Maroon.
2. The Devils defensemen getting more involved offensively. P.K. Subban, Colton White, and Ty Smith all getting involved offensively. The offense starts with the defense.
3. How about P.K. Subban’s crisp tape to tape outlet pass to Yegor Sharangovich? Text book play. Sharangovich did the rest as the Islanders defense were on their heels and could not keep up with his momentum into the offensive zone.
4. The Bash Brothers. Michael McLeod and Nathan Bastian sticking up for their teammate Jimmy Vesey. Good to see they have their teammate's back.
Kyle Shapiro Story
I think hockey fans can all agree on this. We love our EBUGs. Kyle Shapiro from Ocean NJ was thrusted into the spotlight after signing an amateur tryout contract and backed up Gillies. He is well-spoken and he was able to skate the first lap last night.
After Brian Burke criticized the EBUG situation after 42 year old EBUG David Ayers beat the Toronto Maple Leafs, it had me thinking about how having an EBUG is good for the sport.
It gives the common hockey fan hope that their dream of playing one game in the NHL is still alive at any age. It also shows you how far hockey has come in North America that you would be able to find talent locally to fill in as an emergency backup role to a unique position.
We can all dream now to be the next Kyle Shapiro. Thank you Kyle for taking that torch and representing us dreamers with class. You made the state of New Jersey proud!
Jack Hughes names to All-Star game
Hughes is deadly 3-on-3. Now let’s get Jesper Bratt in as well!
******Sam Woo is co-host and executive producer of the Let's Go Devils Podcast which can be heard live every Sunday at 9pm ET and Wednesday at 8:30pm ET. You can follow Sam on Twitter: @PrimetimeSamWoo