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Devils Q&A with Dave Annable

by Eric Marin / New Jersey Devils

Annable was in attendance last Friday night, when Martin Brodeur posted career shutout No. 96 in the Devils' 3-0 win over Philadelphia.

email – For all the Devils' success over the last 12 years, you might be surprised to know what moment in team history Dave Annable still remembers best.

Annable, a longtime Devils fan, currently stars in the hit drama "Brother and Sisters" airing Sunday nights on ABC. The Walden, N.Y., native made his first visit to Prudential Center last week to tape a segment for the latest "NHL All-Access," coming soon to DVD from NHL Productions.

Despite his Hollywood work address, Annable is just like any other Devils' diehard. He has Martin Brodeur jerseys in the Devils' home red and road white, watches every game he can and has even blogged about the Devils during the playoffs.

The 28-year-old actor recently sat down with to talk about following the Garden State's most successful franchise while living under the California sun. Tell us about the show...
Dave Annable: It's a show on ABC called "Brothers and Sisters," and it revolves around a family, more or less. It's a family drama, so there's no ticking time bomb or countdown in the corner. It's a show about characters and relationships. Our show, our writers, have done a fantastic job of creating these characters and these relationships that you believe in. I think that's why so many people are interested in the show; because they can relate.

NJD: What about your character?
DA: I play Justin Walker, the youngest brother. When we started off in Season 1, he was just back from Afghanistan. Throughout the first season he gets into drugs and at the end of the season finds out he's going Iraq. In the second season he's back home with an injury and he falls back into drug abuse. It's been a great story line to play, but a tough one.

NJD: What can we expect from the NHL "All Access" DVD?
It takes you behind the scenes in some of the lives of the players. It shows their homes, and some of their antics on the ice. In some shots they're miked and you get to hear them during practice... it's really rad I can't wait to see it.

How did the league choose you to participate?
DA: I've been associated with the NHL for about a year. I started by doing a playoff blog for the Devils and then the NHL brought the Stanley Cup to my set and I got to hold it. My dad came out to visit and it was an amazing experience.

Are there any other hockey fans on the set?
DA: Oh yeah there were a bunch. With the Cup there, there was a line out the door for our crew. We were able to let the crew take pictures with the Cup and they left the Cup there for a little while. It was amazing.

NJD: You're from Walden, New York...
DA: Yeah, it's about an hour and half north of New York City, but I actually grew up going to Devils games.

NJD: What's the story behind that?
DA: My dad and grandfather had season tickets and I used to come to all these games back when Chris Terreri and Pat Verbeek and all those guys were playing. So I'm a lifelong fan from a family of Devils fans.

Valeri Zelepukin's late goal in Game 7 of the 1994 Eastern Conference Finals remains one of Annable's favorite Devils moments.
NJD: All these years of watching the Devils... what stands as your favorite Devils moment?
DA: One of my favorites – and it turns out that it wasn't the greatest, ultimately – was Game 7 in 1994 with Valeri Zelepukin scoring with 7.7 seconds left. I remember I was listening to the game on the radio with my dad and we went nuts. Then my parents brought me to a bar and we got there in time for the double OT when Stephane Matteau scored, and it was heartbreaking. But that Zelepukin goal was a rad moment.

NJD: Favorite player growing up?
Marty Brodeur, and before Marty it was Chris Terreri. I'm a goaltender, so it sort of morphed into Marty Brodeur. You really don't get better than him. I'm playing [ice hockey] now in L.A. and I'm literally decked out in Brodeur gear. I had his posters on my wall and I've heard he's a really great guy. He's probably the best goalie of all time.

NJD: How about following the Devils on an actor's schedule?
DA: It's not easy. This year I got the Center Ice package and the games start at 4 p.m. on the West Coast which is great. It's tougher definitely to follow them out there, and they don't play the Kings this year out in L.A. But I heard they're changing it next year so maybe I'll get to a couple more games.

Thoughts on this year's team?
DA: Looking pretty good. The Devils, they're always solid. In the last 10 or 15 years they've started out as a playoff contender every season. I'm a little biased, but I think you've got the best in the league in Marty and then you have guys like [Brian] Gionta and [Travis] Zajac and [Patrik] Elias – these guys are all fantastic. They're a talented team and that's one of the things I like about following the Devils is that they're a "team" and the focus is always on a team effort. They just always seem to play really well together.

Finally... red and black or red and green?
I grew up with the red and green, but I love the red and black. I think it's a sharp look, and there's just something about putting on that Devils jersey.

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