Devils’ Night

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Disappointing loss at the Garden last night for the Black and Gold. The thing was, they seemed to play a hell of a game, lots of energy, forechecking, hitting, producing some decent scoring chances. They were pretty well stoned by the Devils’ back-up goalie Yann Danis, however, who got the start over Martin Brodeur. The whole game was fast, tightly checked, like a Cliff Notes version of a hockey game. It’s rare a game finishes in under 2.5 hours and this one did with time to spare.

My biggest complaint, though, isn’t the fact that Dainius Zubrus scored with 1:26 left in the game to grab an annoying 2-1 victory. That sort of thing is going to happen. My main gripe isn’t even the fact that B’s defensemen can’t seem to stop themselves from winding up and blasting pucks into opponents skates constantly, which, I admit, can be pretty damn frustrating to watch.

No, the key problem for me with this game was there were no fights. C’mon guys, you’re at home, playing an East Coast rival, a team loaded with potential pugilists and there isn’t a single scrap to try and spark things, to give the crowd a little somthing for their buck? You had pesky David Clarkson, who at one point got into it with Tim Thomas while Shawn Thornton was on the ice and naught went down. You had Andrew Peters, granted a sad, whiny excuse for an enforcer, trying to pick on undersized d-man Andrew Ference and no one put in a claim on that ticket. You had Bryce Salvador and Mark Fraser, a 200+ PIM guy in the minors, and not a hand raised toward either.

Now, I’m not trying to sound like a grunting Neanderthal here. I know that it was a well played game in many aspects, a game that wouldn’t look out of place in a Playoff match-up many months from now but this ain’t the playoff, friends. This is a Thursday night in October, two days before Halloween and the Devils are in town. The workin’ folk that showed up for this one deserved a little Treat, especially if they weren’t going to see a Trick.

Just sayin’.

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