Mood: Blissed out. We’ve spent the previous two Martin Luther King weekends traveling for family reasons, and while we always like to visit family members, we also really like being home. So this year we’re not going anywhere for the weekend, and as a result managed not to be flying out of Philly on the same day Obama was flying in, and have been all cozy and warm in the embrace of the halls of stately IPB Manor on the coldest days in New Jersey in over four years, and also have not crashed into and frigid rivers. We’re not going to lie — the Devils haven’t really crossed our minds at all yet today.
Favorite Devil: Travis. We like to try to point to one single player as the straw that stirs the drink for the Devils, and while we believed it was Zubrus for a while back there when the team was scoring a lot, now we’re starting to think it’s Travis. When he’s skating like a sluggardly lagabed, the rest of the team does the same. And when he’s doing his best motoring-around-the-ice Zach impersonation, the team wins. In Columbus, he did the latter, and gave the rest of his teammates the slap in the face they all needed after two craptacular periods, and as a result they snatched victory from the sleepily-yawning jaws of defeat. Plus, he’s looked really cute in the postgame interviews and in all those curling stories this week.
Least Favorite Devil: Well, it’s not a Devil, per se, but whoever at the MSG Network decided the Islanders fans get an HD feed tonight and we don’t. Fuck you, MSG Network.
Prediction: The Devils have lately developed a taste for somnambulation. The Islanders are, well, the Islanders. This should be like watching chessmen watch paint dry.
Photograph From The Year Brendan Shanahan Was Drafted That Represents Our Feelings For This Game: A racecar.
We’re rarin’ to go, but we don’t know where we’ll end up. Nor do we think we’re going to get there very fast.
AFTER THE FIRST PERIOD
Mood: Acorntastic! WOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!! Travis was such a dreamboat that we feel like it’s 65-0, even though you’d think it’s only 1-0 Devils if you looked at the scoreboard.
Favorite Devil: A foolish consistency might be the hobgoblin of little minds, but a Travisy consistency is the hobgoblin of lovestruck Devils fan minds. A shorty and a second shorthanded breakaway? Travis, what are you trying to do to us? We were swooning already before the game.
Least Favorite Devil: Still not a Devil, per se, but whoever at MSG Network decided we’d rather watch Jimmy and Stan talking about Pando losing his job to Shanahan than the pregame ceremony for Butthead. Fuck you, MSG.
Prediction: At least four more shorthanded goals from Travis.
Photograph From The Year Brendan Shanahan Was Drafted That Represents Our Feelings For This Game: Mustachioed Pilot
The sky’s the limit for our love of Travis!
AFTER THE SECOND PERIOD
Mood: Delighted, and a little drunk. Yay for wine and 3-0 leads (the first is responsible for the former, and the second the latter)!
Favorite Devil: What the hell? Travis! Now and forever! In fact, we’re going to pretend he scored Clarkson’s and Zach’s goals, too. All of them. For the whole season.
Least Favorite Devil: We love each and every one of them, although they all pale in comparison to a certain someone. Except for Holik and Clemmer. And Shanahan. Ugh. There goes our buzz.
Prediction: A wild, goal-scoring rampage by the one and only Travis. He’s going to wreak a swath of destruction the likes of which the Islanders have never seen! That, or the Devils will cough up two quick goals and we’ll spend the remainder of the third period waiting for Clemmer to give up the inevitable game-tying goal in the final five seconds.
Photograph From The Year Brendan Shanahan Was Drafted That Represents Our Feelings For This Game: A mighty steam locomotive!
This is what opposing goalies see when Travis is bearing down on them. He might not be the Iron Boar, but he is the Iron Horse. And Shanny still isn’t sure he can trust that newfangled steam technology.
AFTER THE THIRD PERIOD
Mood: WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We’re feeling blissed out and like the Devils just won. Life is grand!
Favorite Devil: The Devils are like beautiful snowflakes, and we love each one uniquely. The most beautiful one, though remains Travis. He’s the snowflake that stirs the drink.
Least Favorite Devil: That horse-toothed chemistry-destroyer looming on the horizon. (Oh, sure, we might end up eating those words. But we highly doubt it.)
Game Summary: Last year the Devils were catastrophically awful against every team with “New York” in their name, and while we have nothing to say about that one whose name also rhymes with “Blangers”, we would love to spend the rest of this season playing exclusively the Islanders. This year’s Devils might have trouble against teams like the Thrashers, but when facing an Islanders team that’s quite probably tanking for Tavares and feeling dispirited by the talk of relocation, they manage to beat an opponent they should be beating. That’s a refreshing change!
Photograph From The Year Brendan Shanahan Was Drafted That Represents Our Feelings For This Game: A Giant Parade!
All those horses have been trained to say “WOOOOOOOOOO!!!!”