While the team was on the road, we headed up to Newark to do some sleuthing to figure out why the Devils suck so bad. And while snooping around the practice rink and dressing room, we stumbled across a shocking
book pamphlet leaflet index card that we are copying verbatim below. We think it really helps explain the current dreadful state of the Devils.
NEW JERSEY DEVILS OFFICIAL OFFENSIVE PLAYBOOK – SECOND SET
Note: In normal seasons, the second set of official offensive plays are deployed on February 1. Due to the Olympic break, the second set of offensive plays for 2009-2010 will be deployed on January 1. The penalty for using plays during games that are not included in the official second set, be they from the official first set or of the player’s own creative impulse, remains the same: rooming with Lou Lamoriello. There will be no exceptions to this rule.
Introduction: All of the plays below shall begin in the defensive zone. The process of collecting the puck in the defensive zone, regardless of offensive play to follow, is the same. The forward skater shall stand above one of the faceoff dots and wait for the goaltender (30) to make a save and either direct or pass the rebound to him. Forward skaters should never “try to be a hero” and make a play to retrieve the puck himself. Under no conditions should a defensive skater ever touch the puck with his stick in the defensive zone. If a defensive skater feels he cannot resist touching the puck with his stick in the defensive zone, he should either deflect or shoot the puck into his own net.
1. The Steamroller
After retrieving the puck in the defensive zone a forward skater shall carry the puck toward the offensive zone on an angle toward one of the wings. The forward skater’s linemates shall accompany him, while the defensive skaters hang back, creating an even-numbers three-on-three rush. The play shall remain onsides while entering the offensive zone. When the puck-carrier reaches the top of the faceoff circle, he shall gently shove the puck forward into the possession of the opposing team, pull up, and retreat back to the defensive zone. The puck-carrier’s linemates shall follow.
2. The Bulldozer
This play shall unfold identically to the Steamroller except a defensive skater shall jump into the play after the puck-carrier releases the puck into the possession of the opposing team. While the forward skaters turn around and skate back to the defensive zone, the defensive skater shall “pinch”, skating past the opposing players toward the opposing net, so as to remain behind the play as the opposing team returns to the other end of the ice.
3. The Steamdozer
After retrieving the puck in the defensive zone a forward skater shall carry the puck straight up the ice toward the opposing net. He shall be accompanied by one linemate, so as to create an “odd-man rush” of two skaters against one. The puck-carrier shall stickhandle all the way to the blue-painted crease, then attempt a backhand shot that the opposing goaltender can turn aside without difficulty. The accompanying forward skater shall then pull up outside the blue-painted crease, mindful not to get in the way of the opposing goaltender and under no circumstances touching the puck, then turn around and skate back to the defensive zone. The puck-carrier shall remain below the opposing goal line while the opposing team returns to the other end of the ice.
There are times when the opposing team makes it impossible for a conscientious New Jersey Devil to perform his game plan to the letter. Such situations often occur in the neutral zone. If a New Jersey Devils skater finds himself in possession of the puck in the neutral zone, he should take one of the following actions:
1. Take a penalty
2. Clear the puck off of the playing surface
3. Return the puck to the opposing player he got it from
4. Go for a line change
5. Play dead
There are also times when the opposing team conspires to force the New Jersey Devils into situations where they are ahead on the scoreboard. If a New Jersey Devils skater finds himself in possession of a lead, he should take the following action:
1. Lose it.