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Four ways for Devils to stay alive

Tuesday, 06.05.2012 / 6:41 PM / News
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Four ways for Devils to stay alive



 
LOS ANGELES -- Following the Devils' Game 3 loss Monday night, goaltender Martin Brodeur was asked about what it will take to overcome a 3-0 series deficit in the Stanley Cup Final.

The 40-year-old veteran who has heard the question before gave an answer that was somewhat cliché, yet totally honest.

"I think every team that's down 3-0 will have the same speech," Brodeur said. "It's not new. We're looking at this as one game at a time, like everybody will tell you in the last 20 years or so.

"It's not the best situation. It's probably the worst situation you can be in -- no, it is the worst situation you can be in. We just have to put our head down and work hard. We believe in ourselves. We're going to compete as hard and the result will be there one way or the other."

The Devils will need to beat the Kings, who have only lost twice in 17 postseason games, four straight times in order to win the Stanley Cup. Game 4 is Wednesday night at Staples Center, and here are four things the Devils can do in order to begin climbing the biggest mountain in sports.

1. Score first -- With the Kings holding a 15-2 record in the playoffs, of course they have tremendous numbers whether they score first (10-1) or trail first (5-1). But the Devils haven't made the Kings doubt themselves for a second in this series, and forcing them to play from behind for the first time will be a step in the right direction.

2. Hope Quick goes to pieces -- When all else fails, perhaps some hoping and praying wouldn't hurt. The Devils have thrown everything they can at Kings goaltender Jonathan Quick and virtually none of it has worked. They've put traffic in front of Quick and spent time at practice working on redirections. All it's yielded is one goal off a ricochet off Kings defenseman Slava Voynov and another by Ryan Carter off a tip in the slot. It's reached the point where the Devils need to let shots fly and hope Quick suddenly turns into a pumpkin.

3. Start well … again -- The Devils came out flat in Game 1, but they had great starts to Games 2 and 3. Unfortunately for them, Drew Doughty blew that up with a great individual effort for a goal in Game 2, and Quick was lights out for the first 25 minutes before Alec Martinez put the Kings ahead 1-0 in Game 3 -- and all 60 minutes, for that matter. The Devils can use an infusion of confidence, and if they don't get a goal early, they can at least hang their hats on controlling play early for the third straight game and build from that.

4. Brodeur needs to steal one -- He hasn't cost the Devils a game in this series and played well enough to win the first two games. But with the way Quick is playing at the other end of the ice, Brodeur needs to find a level he possessed when he was 10 years younger if the Devils aren't going to give him any support.

Follow Dave Lozo on Twitter: @DaveLozo

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - BOS 82 54 19 9 261 177 117
2 y - PIT 82 51 24 7 249 207 109
3 x - TBL 82 46 27 9 240 215 101
4 x - MTL 82 46 28 8 215 204 100
5 x - NYR 82 45 31 6 218 193 96
6 x - PHI 82 42 30 10 236 235 94
7 x - CBJ 82 43 32 7 231 216 93
8 x - DET 82 39 28 15 222 230 93
9 WSH 82 38 30 14 235 240 90
10 NJD 82 35 29 18 197 208 88
11 OTT 82 37 31 14 236 265 88
12 TOR 82 38 36 8 231 256 84
13 CAR 82 36 35 11 207 230 83
14 NYI 82 34 37 11 225 267 79
15 FLA 82 29 45 8 196 268 66
16 BUF 82 21 51 10 157 248 52

STATS

2013-2014 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Jagr 82 24 43 16 67
P. Elias 65 18 35 -4 53
T. Zajac 80 18 30 3 48
A. Henrique 77 25 18 3 43
M. Zidlicky 81 12 30 -3 42
M. Ryder 82 18 16 -6 34
A. Greene 82 8 24 3 32
E. Gelinas 60 7 22 -3 29
D. Zubrus 82 13 13 1 26
R. Clowe 43 7 19 -10 26
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Schneider 16 15 12 .921 1.97
M. Brodeur 19 14 6 .901 2.51