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Forums :: Blog World :: Guest Writer: NJ finally playing with panache; Alain Nasreddine deserves much credit
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Eklund
Commissioner
Joined: 09.15.2005

Jan 3 @ 10:15 PM ET
Guest Writer: NJ finally playing with panache; Alain Nasreddine deserves much credit
Gambi99
New Jersey Devils
Location: NY
Joined: 07.09.2007

Jan 3 @ 10:29 PM ET
Great write-up, I couldn't agree with you more. Nas deserves a lot of credit for this turnaround even though the Devils will probably have some more downs as the season goes but at least now they are watchable and actually playing some decent hockey. Maybe Hall impending free-agency played a role in this teams early struggles, maybe it was John Hynes switching lines around it seemed every 5 minutes, maybe it was bad goal-tending early on, maybe it was just a lot of new faces trying to play together needing time to jell or maybe it was all of the above. All I know now is that the Devils are playing hard for each other and playing a "faster" style of hockey. If anything Nas seems to have calmed down the Devils and has them playing the right way now. Hopefully it will last through the end of the season. I wouldn't mind a "St.Louis" type of run here ....I won't hold my breath though
kaptaan
Vancouver Canucks
Location: shart on winsix, CA
Joined: 09.29.2010

Jan 4 @ 6:00 AM ET
Taylor Hall seems to have been a lead weight on the team
Htowntigers89
New Jersey Devils
Location: NJ
Joined: 06.30.2014

Jan 4 @ 8:28 AM ET
Great article. I felt like I hit rock bottom as a devils fan of 30 years after that 7-1 loss to Buffalo, It was extremely challenging to watch. They are finally playing with urgency and emotions and that really is a credit to the coaching, but I also think we are going through the Jon Tavares effect.

When JT left the isles all those guys especially Barzal took their game to the next level to show the hockey world that they could win with out JT. You are seeing it with these devils and especially Nico who really has become my favorite devil to watch. He does not take a shift off. I was watching him just take hit after hit from Chara the other night behind the Boston net, and just kept grinding it out with the puck. He has gotten so strong on the puck and is winning board battles with his second effort. This kid was great already, but from this point on I think we are going to see super star Nico.

On a side note I want to give Hynes credit. He over performed with his roster year after year while getting terrible goaltending. At the end of the day his golden child Hall is what caused his destruction. He was giving Hall 20+ minutes a night like he always was and Hall just wasn’t playing like the Hall we have seen in the past. Not sure if it was recovering from injury or he just simply didn’t care, but Hall was the problem.
Sashamook
New Jersey Devils
Location: NY
Joined: 06.20.2010

Jan 4 @ 3:50 PM ET
On a side note I want to give Hynes credit. He over performed with his roster year after year while getting terrible goaltending. At the end of the day his golden child Hall is what caused his destruction. He was giving Hall 20+ minutes a night like he always was and Hall just wasn’t playing like the Hall we have seen in the past. Not sure if it was recovering from injury or he just simply didn’t care, but Hall was the problem.
- Htowntigers89


Hynes’s tenure
Year 1: team improves by 6 points, goes from 6th worst in the league to 12th worst in the league.
Year 2: 3rd worst in the league.
Year 3: Taylor Hall almost singlehandedly drags the team into the playoffs, with help from Keith Kinkaid.
Year 4: 3rd worst in the league.
Year 5: 2nd worst in the league at the point of his firing.

Where’s the over performing year after year? One noteworthy season, and Hall actually won a trophy specifically because the rest of the team wasn’t playing very well.
Hynes got a bad team and took them to new lows. I don’t know that another coach would have fared any better, but let’s not act like the team wasn’t disastrous under him. Hall might be the reason he was fired this season, but he’s also the only reason he wasn’t fired years earlier.