The Devils defeated the Rangers tonight, 5-4, at The Rock with goals by Bennett (2), Hall, Zacha and Moore. Here's what we learned:
1) Yohann Auvitu is making one heck of a case for himself as an NHL defenseman. The biggest question mark for the reigning Defenseman of the Year in the Finnish Hockey League was how well his game would translate on a smaller sheet of ice. With three assists tonight, beaucoup minutes quarterbacking the power play and strong positional play in the defensive zone, looks like he's transitioning just fine.
2) Special teams are shaping up well. Hynes tried a lot of options on the man advantage and they all looked solid - great puck movement and a plethora of offensive weapons - resulting in two power play goals. Although they allowed a PPG in the third, the Devils looked strong there as well, especially the last two minutes of regulation defending a one-goal lead with the extra attacker. That said, excessive penalties are still a cause for concern.
3) After scoring two goals in less than four minutes early in the first, it'd be reasonable to say Beau Bennett looks like a solid option to ride shotgun with Henrique and Hall. I noted pre-game that we'd see a lot of speed and creativity from that line and they didn't disappoint.
Honorable Mention) Cory Schneider was slated to play the entire game, but they called an audible this afternoon for precautionary reasons due to soreness. Lindback, the scheduled backup, jumped between the pipes and made 30 saves in the win.
The Devils will practice tomorrow and then travel to Brooklyn on Monday to face the Islanders. Puck drops at 7pm.