The New Jersey Devils were well on their way to winning their first game since Ilya Kovalchuk’s “retirement” last night. They went into the third period with a 3-0 lead over Edmonton, but the Oilers rallied back with four goals over the span of just 7:47 minutes.
The only silver lining for New Jersey is that Patrik Elias netted a shorthanded goal while goaltender Martin Brodeur was pulled. That led to them getting a point in a 5-4 shootout defeat.
Still, that game has to be a tough pill to swallow and it makes them 0-1-2 this season. They came into 2013-14 with the goal of proving people wrong for predicting that they would struggle in their first season without Kovalchuk and so far they haven’t succeeded in that goal.
There’s still plenty of time left though and consequently Devils captain Bryce Salvador doesn’t want his team to put too much pressure on themselves too early.
“If, at this point you really start squeezing your stick… Obviously we want to win and we need points, but you can’t overdo the pressure on it,” Salvador said, according to the Star-Ledger.
Bad starts can snowball into bigger problems, but by the same token, it might just take one win for the Devils to find their groove. They will play the Vancouver Canucks tonight.