Defense Needs To Step Up For New Jersey Devils

By Nick Villano
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

This New Jersey Devils team doesn’t know what it wants to be.  They lost their first seven contests then won three of their next five.  If they lose on Saturday night it will be their fifth three-game losing streak of the season.

The Devils are trying to stay positive when it seems nothing is going right.  The team has lost 13 games this season by one goal, and that amounts to more games than they have actually won.  Whether it is being bad under pressure or just plain bad luck, something has to change for the Devils.

In the beginning of the season the reason for all the team’s losses was a lack of offense, but now it seems that defense seems to be the issue.  The Devils’ back end is letting other teams get too many rebounds on their goalies Cory Schneider and Martin Brodeur.  Two of the Pittsburgh Penguins‘ three goals on Saturday came on the rebound.  The other goal came on a defensive miscommunication that left Chris Conner wide open in front of Schneider.

Against the Columbus Blue Jackets, the defense let their forwards stand in front of Brodeur all game.  They let them bump him and block him without consequence which shows why the Devils have been losing.  They have not stopped teams from getting positioning on their goaltender.  If the Devils are going to start winning again, it starts with their defense.

The Devils welcome the Tampa Bay Lightning on Saturday, and this is a win they need desperately.  They need to stop the slide now or it may never end.  Thankfully they play in he Metropolitan Division or they may be out right now.

Nick Villano is the New Jersey Devils writer for Rant Sports.  He also adds to their NFL and MLB content.  Follow him on Twitter for more sports.

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