The Devils lost to the Panthers, 2-1, in overtime tonight at the BB&T Center in Sunrise. Their lone goal came from PA Parenteau when Yohann Auvitu's shot from the point went off his skate as he jumped out of the way. Here's what we learned:
1) All the attention to detail head coach John Hynes has been focusing on in practice for the past week is paying off. In the preseason, we saw a lot of poor stick or body position, which lead to them chasing the opposition and ultimately taking undisciplined penalties. We saw far fewer penalties in the pre-season finale on Saturday and tonight's game, where they allowed only three power play opportunities, proved it wasn't a fluke.
2) It appears Hynes' message to shoot to score still needs some time to sink in. Only 24 shots on goal for the Devils tonight, including a big goose egg in their two power play opportunities as well as overtime. It's a two sided issue as they struggled to maintain puck possession, but when they did gain the zone, they seemed to opt to pass more often that shoot. Pretty sure that will show up in their next video session.
3) Despite the OT loss, Cory Schneider looked more like the Cory Schneider of last year and less like the Cory Schneider of pre-season. Not only did he stop 32 shots, he was strong down low, limited rebound opportunities and was like a hungry hippo in the crease slapping that glove over every loose puck within reach. This is the Schneider that gives them a chance to win every night.
The Devils will fly to Tampa tonight, practice there tomorrow afternoon, and get ready to face off against the Lightning on Saturday night (7 p.m. MSG+2).