NEWARK, N.J. -- As Scott Gomez's career trajectory went from decline into full-on nosedive Sunday with the news that the Montreal Canadiens told him to stay home, some of his former teammates in New Jersey couldn't help but question what exactly has happened to the former Calder Trophy winner since he left the Devils.
SOG: 59 | +/-: -9
"He's an unbelievable talent and he has great hockey sense, but he got successful right from the get go -- and rightfully so -- on a good team with good teammates, and the main thing is he was always under great structure," forward Patrik Elias told NHL.com. "That's the biggest thing with him. Maybe when he left here his mind wasn't focused 100 percent on hockey. When you go to the Rangers and Montreal you have to do a lot of stuff off the ice, too, and some guys can't handle that."
Whatever it is, Gomez hasn't come close to recreating the personal and team success he had with the Devils since leaving New Jersey on July 1, 2008, to sign a seven-year, $51.5 million contract with the Rangers.