Since the New Jersey Devils beat the Washington Capitals 5-4 in overtime back on Dec. 21, the team has only scored 13 goals in seven games. That is less than two goals per game, and Michael Ryder and Adam Henrique have tallied eight of those 13.
Just to help you out and do the math for you, that means that only 11.1 percent of the team is responsible for 61.5 percent of the scoring over the last seven games. That is something that is unacceptable from the Devils, especially seeing as Ryder and Henrique play on the same line. The only other players who have scored at all in the last seven games are Marek Zidlicky, Andy Greene, Travis Zajac and Stephen Gionta.
Looking at this, I can see one thing: The Devils’ lines need to grab some kind of consistency. The team only has one offensive line that is producing at all along with Ryane Clowe. It really is a shame, especially with the finishing effort that the team put on in the closing minute to send it to overtime was wasted by only getting one point to their division rival the Philadelphia Flyers last night. With this team’s position currently, they need all the extra points they can get.
The only way the Devils are going to get said points is to get the rest of their scoring going. The line of Jaromir Jagr, Zajac and Dainius Zubrus still looks great when they are on the ice, but they don’t seem to get the bounces in the past few games. All four lines are still doing great on the forecheck for most of the game, getting to loose pucks and making their own chances.
Speaking of Jagr, his goal drought was extended to six games while he only has two goals in the last 16 games after scoring 11 goals in his first 26 games. It is especially surprising since Jagr on the season has shot 12 percent on the season but hasn’t scored in the last two games despite taking 12 shots. Don’t get me wrong, nobody expects Jagr to score like it is 1999, but just to see him light the lamp a little more often would be nice.
This team has Ryder and Henrique to thank for the little offense they are getting right now. If the rest of the team cannot step up, they are going to continue to waste great goaltending performances by Martin Brodeur and Cory Schneider. The defense has held up their end of the bargain; now it’s time for the offense to do what it was brought here to do on a more consistent basis.
Nick Villano is the New Jersey Devils writer for Rant Sports. He also adds to the site’s content of NBA, NFL and MLB stories. You can follow him on Twitter for more sports talk.