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NEWS

Sutter focusing on the details

Wednesday, 01.07.2009 / 5:03 PM / News
By Eric Marin
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Sutter focusing on the details
newjerseydevils.com – Devils head coach Brent Sutter doesn't plan to make any drastic changes, but said Wednesday that he wants his team to get back to focusing on the details.

The Devils have won four of their last six, but have allowed the first goal three times over their last four outings, including Sunday's comeback overtime win over Ottawa.

New Jersey fell behind, 3-0, Tuesday in Carolina before making things close in a 3-2 loss to the Hurricanes.

Elias had a goal and an assist in Carolina to tie Zach Parise for the team lead in points.
Watch Patrik Elias highlights 
"You have to recognize why you're not playing well because eventually that catches up to you," Sutter said. "Last night [in Carolina] wasn't one of our better games. We didn't give up many scoring chances, but we didn't create a lot of quality scoring chances either because we did some things that we don't normally do. It comes down to getting the players' level of play back to where it needs to be."

Sutter's bold move to pull Scott Clemmensen on the power play with eight minutes left in regulation helped the club chip away at the three-goal deficit, but New Jersey's comeback bid came up short.

Paul Martin's power play goal on the improvised 6-on-4 made it 3-1 with 7:48 left, and Patrik Elias added his 18th of the season with 21.5 seconds remaining. Sutter revisited the goaltender move following Wednesday's practice at AmeriHealth Pavilion.

"It's a hunch that you have," he said. "At that stage, what do you have to lose? What are you protecting, a 3-0 lead and a power play with eight minutes left when you haven't had many scoring chances?"

Sutter pulled it off once before while coaching in Red Deer (WHL), and wound up scoring off the ensuing 6-on-4 while trailing 3-0. The Rebels scored at even-strength, then again on a man advantage before winning 4-3 in overtime.

"When you look at the first one, we scored on it, we did it again, and if we scored on that one with four-and-a-half minutes left it would have been a 3-2 game," said Sutter of the Devils' Carolina rally. "And we scored with 21.5 seconds left. It's just a hunch you have. You don't want to be doing it all the time, but every now and then when it occurs, you react to it."

Elias, who added an assist against the Hurricanes, tied Zach Parise for the team points lead with 46 (18g-28a), and extended his points streak to four games. He supported Sutter's gamble.

"I liked it," Elias said. "You're down 3-0 you have a power play and usually in this game it's tough to get back from a three-goal deficit, in the third period, especially. It was a good move." 

Sutter said he used Wednesday's skate to get his players back where he feels they need to be. New Jersey hosts slumping Atlanta on Thursday, then heads west to open a six-game road trip beginning Saturday in Los Angeles.

"We're still finding ways to win games, but if you continue to let things get away from you it's just going to snowball," Sutter said. "We're trying to nip things in the bud and make guys realize it and see it and we're going to deal with it.

"At this point in time there's no need to shake anything up. I think it's just little things since the Rangers game [on Dec. 27] that we've allowed to get away from our game. There are things that we have to get better at doing again."

NJD NOTES
Sutter said that defenseman Colin White (upper body) will be back in action Thursday after missing five games. As of Wednesday afternoon, no decision had been made on who will come out of the lineup.

SCHEDULE

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AWAY
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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 TBL 51 32 15 4 166 133 68
2 MTL 48 32 13 3 128 108 67
3 DET 50 29 12 9 149 129 67
4 NYI 49 32 16 1 158 139 65
5 PIT 49 28 13 8 145 125 64
6 BOS 50 27 16 7 134 124 61
7 NYR 47 28 15 4 139 112 60
8 WSH 49 25 14 10 144 125 60
9 FLA 47 21 16 10 115 132 52
10 PHI 51 22 22 7 140 151 51
11 OTT 48 20 19 9 136 136 49
12 TOR 51 22 25 4 144 156 48
13 NJD 50 19 22 9 113 138 47
14 CBJ 48 21 24 3 120 151 45
15 CAR 49 17 26 6 105 129 40
16 BUF 50 14 33 3 94 179 31

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
A. Henrique 43 10 17 -1 27
J. Jagr 46 10 16 -12 26
M. Cammalleri 38 16 7 -2 23
P. Elias 40 6 15 -13 21
M. Zidlicky 50 4 16 -8 20
M. Ryder 42 6 12 -2 18
S. Gomez 26 4 13 -6 17
S. Bernier 35 8 8 3 16
T. Zajac 42 8 8 -6 16
M. Havlat 32 5 8 -9 13
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
K. Kinkaid 2 3 3 .919 2.34
C. Schneider 17 19 5 .922 2.36