1. Yesterday afternoon something really strange happened here at stately IPB Manor — we had a long, rambling conversation about the Devils roster. It’s been about a year since we’ve done that, since all of our conversations last season were all about how much of a disconnect we had from the team thanks to a bunch of old, slow, washed-up one-year free agent signings. And in the course of this conversation, Boomer off-handedly mentioned Kevin Weekes, as she hadn’t read that Weekesie was on his way out. As we explained that the Devils had signed Yann Danis, and then refreshed Boomer’s memory about who Yann Danis is, we had a shocking realization. Danis is not just the latest forgettable guy who’s going to get three starts for the Devils behind Marty; no, he’s part of Lemaire’s new offensive scheme. Remember how last year it always took the Devils about 45 shots to score a single goal against the Islanders? Well, now we’ve got an Islanders goalie facing the Devils during practice. This means that Lemaire’s going to be able to hold up a truly shitty team shooting percentage from practices and issue an edict that they need to rethink their shooting strategy. We figure he’s going to enact a rule that Devils players are only allowed to shoot if they are absolutely certain the puck will go in, and if they don’t, they’ll get tazed.
2. On something of the same note, now that the Islanders have Biron, we are not going to be subjected to low-scoring games against the Islanders anymore. We’re still guaranteed to be able to score 36 goals in six games against one division opponent this coming season, but that opponent is now on the Island instead of in Philly.
3. Also continuing on that same note, is Zach going to have to change the name of Shot Club when shooting is no longer allowed?
4. And continuing even further with some of the themes discussed in item #1, we’ve been very surprised at the vehemence with which Boomer hates the Lemaire hiring. We’ve said it before here, but it bears repeating that Boomer is normally extremely mellow about the Devils. Deeply dedicated to them, yes, but demonstrative? No. And yet she can’t shut up this summer about how miserable she is about Lemaire. How much the team has disappointed her. How much she’s dreading the season starting again. It’s nothing but doom and gloom. So we’ve decided she should start her own “I Hate Lemaire As Coach Of The Devils” blog, just to make us look cheery and optimistic by comparison.
5. And speaking of the Lemaire hiring, we got to discussing yesterday afternoon who we would have chosen in his place. We were forced to admit that we actually pay very little attention to head coaches around the league, because so much of what seems to be genius coaching often smacks just of “the right guy in the right place at the right time” (see: Robinson, Larry, in 2000, and Bylsma, Dan, last year). After agreeing that we didn’t really have any idea who would have been a better choice, the following exchange took place:
Schnookie: Of course, I will be more than happy to admit in mid-June, if necessary, that I was wrong about Lemaire.
Schnookie, Pookie, and Boomer, [in unison]: SNORT!
Pookie: I’ve never cared before about our head coaches because no matter who they are, the team is always the same.
Schnookie: That’s why I figured as long as it wasn’t Lemaire, it wouldn’t matter who Lou hired. But the qualifier there was “as long as it wasn’t Lemaire.”
Boomer: [Spluttering in incoherent rage about Lemaire.]
Pookie: I knew all along it was going to be Lemaire, so I didn’t bother even considering “as long as it wasn’t him”. I knew it was going to be him, so it wasn’t worth it.
Schnookie: I can’t think of the last time Boomer was this pissed off about a move the Devils made. I think it might have been when we brought Claude Lemieux back.
Pookie: And look how that turned out! Maybe this time around Jacques will win us two Cups!
Schnookie: I didn’t feel that way about Lemaire. But I was positive before it happened that we were bringing Blobby back last summer.
Boomer: And look how that turned out.
Pookie: Yeah, he won us, like, the opposite of two Cups.
6. Finally, last night we were watching Jeopardy (we know, we know…) and saw a local commercial for Path-Mark. And it was so bizarre and so charmingly “regional grocery store commercial” that we felt like we were watching a hockey game on satellite from Canada. It was a nice feeling. We wish the season would hurry up and get here already.