The NHL's general managers have opted not to adjust the trapezoid, which establishes the area where goaltenders can play the puck behind the net.Martin Brodeur
said he was surprised the decision wasn't given more thought. The four-time Vezina Trophy winner believes giving the goalies more leeway to play the puck can prevent injuries to defensemen, who are vulnerable to speeding forecheckers.
"When you’re not able to control what the players are able to do, at least if you go out and are able chip in – for a goalie, just to be able to move the puck anywhere," Brodeur said. "The hits are still going to be there, but I think the amount will be less, especially around the net where it’s a tough spot for players to get out of the way. In the corners, it’s not too bad. But with the net and with the goalie, there’s a lot of screens made, and sometimes you lose sight of a guy coming in really hide. Sometimes goalies can help in these situations."
Brodeur sees at least one potential benefit to restraining the goaltenders' stickhandling.
"Maybe it’ll extend my career just a little bit longer if I stay in the net," he said.
• The Devils will honor the 2003 Stanley Cup team on Wednesday. New Jersey beat Anaheim in seven games to take its third title, and Brodeur said facing the Ducks still brings back memories of that nerve-wracking triumph.
"It does, especially when I got a phone call to get Turner (Stevenson) to the rink with his kids this morning," he said. "I haven’t seen him in a long time so it was definitely nice to see that. You know, 2003 was our last Stanley Cup but it was a great season. We accomplished a lot of great things, and it was the first Cup for Pat Burns as a coach. He’s coached in the biggest markets you can imagine, and he won his first Stanley Cup with us in New Jersey. So, a lot of good things, a lot of good friendships that were made – that’s what a winning team is all about. Anaheim could tell you the same when they won (in 2007), how close they were when it happened."
Brodeur on the Devils overcoming their injuries to start 11-4-0:
"When you have guys out of the lineup, I think it brings everybody together, knowing that you have to play within your limits to be successful. Guys are playing more minutes, so they have to keep their games more simple, because it’s not that easy to do. It’s been working out pretty good for us so far."
|Scott Niedermayer spent his first 13 seasons in New Jersey, and faced brother, Rob, in the 2003 Stanley Cup Finals versus Anaheim. |
• Former Devil Scott Niedermayer returned Wednesday to New Jersey, where he was one of five players (M. Brodeur, S. Brylin, K. Daneyko, S. Stevens) to win three rings.
Niedermayer, now the Ducks' captain, wasn't surprised to see the Devils at the top of the League in goals against (2.20).
"Obviously, I was with Jacques here for quite a long time and know him pretty well," Niedermayer said. "I had some success here, and he's a good coach. So no, I'm not surprised to see where these guys are. They're a good hockey club and Jacques is a great coach."Scott on not facing his brother, Rob, who is sidelined with an upper body injury:
"That would've been a bit different. Flip jerseys and away we go; see how it turns out. I went and saw him last night and he was happy to join and he's having fun being here (in New Jersey)."…on his reaction to Rob signing with the Devils in the offseason:
"It was a tough summer for him, how long it went looking to get a job. I thought it would be great for him. It's a good organization, a good hockey club that's going to win more than its share of games. I knew Jacques as well, so I thought he'd fit in with him. I thought it would be good."...on possibly being Brodeur's teammate on the 2010 Canadian Olympic Team with Devils head coach Jacques Lemaire as an assistant:
"I was teammates with Marty for a long time, and he saved my butt many, many times. The reason we had the success we did, a big part was because of him, and Jacques as well. He came in my second full year here, and really did a lot for this organization as far as teaching it how to win and getting that expectation up where it is. Two guys that I know well and was glad to be on the same team with for a long time."…on the most special moment from Devils' 2003 Cup run:
"I guess you'd have to remember playing against my brother. That would be the interesting fact of that Stanley Cup final was he was on the other side. It was a unique experience for both of us."
On Wednesday, Lemaire added Brian Rolston to the names unavailable for game action and admitted the mounting injuries have become frustrating.
"Especially when you get with a new team and work so everyone knows and does everything you want," Lemaire said. "You get to a point that you feel it’s coming, it’s getting better and better, and then you get injuries. Or you get guys coming back who missed a lot of what you’re talking about the game, how to play it and what to expect. Then you have to redo it again. In a way, it is frustrating, but it’s a part of the game. I look in the League, everyone has their problems with injuries. Some do have more, but you have to live with it."
Lemaire on the Devils winning despite the injuries:
"Reason is, I guess the guys that play, they do a little more than we expect. It gives the team a chance to get wins."…on Matt Corrente's game:
"He plays an aggressive game. He’s not that offensive-type of defenseman. In his own zone, he’s good. You can rely on him and he plays, as I said, aggressive. He can bang, which is good." • Matt Corrente on feeling nervous after his call-up:
"Yesterday on the drive up, I was pretty anxious, but I’m feeling good now. I have to stay calm and just keep doing what I’m doing and try not to think too much."