It’s no secret that the New Jersey Devils have had trouble in shootouts this season. Jersey’s team is 0-4 in the shootout, and to make matters worse, they haven’t even found the back of the net.
In 14 opportunities, the Devils have not scored a shootout goal, and it only gets worse. The Devils haven’t scored a shootout goal in the teams last 20 attempts dating back to last year. That ties the record for the most consecutive attempts without a goal since the Tampa Bay Lightning in 2009.
The latest catastrophe came in last night’s game against the Maple Leafs. New Jersey and Toronto were tied after the overtime period, and the game went into a shootout.
Michael Ryder went first and his attempt was saved by Jonathan Bernier, and then Travis Zajac missed the net. After the first two Maple Leafs chances were saved by Cory Schneider, he was finally beat by James van Riemsdyk putting Toronto in front.
Adam Henrique was the Devils last hope and what did he do? He missed the net giving the Maple Leafs the win.
New Jersey has now lost 8 straight games decided by a shootout, and is one short of tying the NHL record. The Calgary Flames currently have lost 9 straight games in shootouts, and that streak is still going.
You would think that someone good enough to play in the NHL would be able to score a breakaway, no one defending you goal, but the Devils haven’t been able to.
Obviously the loss of the teams best scorer Ilya Kovalchuck to the KHL is a killer, but there has to be someone else on the team that can beat a goalie one on one.
If it were up to me though, I would get rid of the shootout because there’s no worse way to decide a deadlock game than by going to a shootout. It’s like the NHL saying we can’t play much longer so let’s just end this game.
But until Gary Bettman finally comes to that decision, there doesn’t appear to be an end in sight for the Devils shootout woes.