Welcome to another edition of NHL Insights as we look at four teams that are continuing with their stellar play as another month ticks off the calendar. Those teams include the New Jersey Devils, St. Louis Blues, Boston Bruins, and Tampa Bay Lightning.
A new season means NHL Insights has returned. We are about a month into the season and we have seen lots of surprises thus far. The New Jersey Devils remain red-hot. So too are the Boston Bruins, especially on home ice. The St. Louis Blues have turned things around thanks to the hockey moms being around. Meanwhile in Tampa, the Lightning are looking like their former selves. Then there are the Buffalo Sabres, who inching closer to having their season over relatively soon. In this edition of NHL Insights, we look at the New Jersey Devils, St. Louis Blues, Boston Bruins, Tampa Bay Lightning, and Buffalo Sabres.
Time to dive into some NHL Insights for the past week.
NHL Insights: Devils, Blues, Bruins, Lightning, and Sabres
New Jersey Devils
It sounds like a broken record and people may be tired of hearing seeing posts on the New Jersey Devils, but the Devils are playing like one of the best teams in the league. Only Boston has a better record. However, the Devils are the hottest team in the league. Entering Wednesday night against Toronto, the Devils are on a 13-games winning streak. This is tied for the longest winning streak in franchise history. This current version of the Devils will try to break the mark set by the 2000-01 Devils team that went to the Stanley Cup Final.
Lindy Ruff is pushing all the right buttons right now. But he is getting a lot of help from his friends on the bench mainly Andrew Brunette. Brunette has really fixed this Devils powerplay which was one of the worst in the league last season. In addition, the penalty kill is playing better than last year. But it is the play of goaltending that stands out the most. Vitek Vanecek is the clear number-one starter and has brought consistency and strength back to the position. His timely saves have allowed the Devils to transition from defence to offence really quickly.
St. Louis Blues
How about those St. Louis Blues? Two weeks ago this team was losing eight games in a row with no signs of turning it around. However, Ryan O’Reilly pointed to his game and how it could be better. And he has been during the Blues seven-game winning along with Jordan Kyrou and Robert Thomas. Both players are living up to the contracts they just signed. But it has been the play of O’Reilly that has really sparked the Blues.
St. Louis is back to their old style of play of being more aggressive on the forecheck and being more physical as well. Before they were sacrificing being physical and playing good defence for speed and high flying offence. That is not the staple of Craig Berube‘s game. General manager Doug Armstrong was insistent that a coaching change was not necessary at this moment. If a change was going to be made Armstrong would do it. But he wouldn’t change the coach just to change the coach.
The players themselves have turned their play around. Jordan Binnington is playing with confidence as he did in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. He is key to the Blues success. It also helps the Blues are holding the annual Mom’s trip and the players do not want to let these hockey moms down. They may have to stick around all season if this streak continues.
Around Full Press Coverage
Full Press Bets: Early 2022 NFL MVP Odds: Bills’ Josh Allen Favored
The Bruins cannot be classified as a surprise anymore. This team is really good as they ride a seven-game winning streak. Boston has a complete team that is four lines deep. It does not matter if the team plays on the road or on home ice, right now there is no stopping the Bruins. Speaking of TD Garden, the Bruins set a record with 11 straight wins on home ice to start the season. That is remarkable considering the injuries they had to begin the season.
You have to give a lot of credit to head coach Jim Montgomery and what he has done with this team. He has kept them focused and on track regardless of who is in the lineup. Patrice Bergeron, Brad Marchand, and David Krejci are focused and determined to win one more together. David Pastrnak is going to get paid this upcoming summer… it is just a matter of how much and for how long. Pastrnak and Krejci have picked up where they left as the Czech mates are playing well together.
Top to bottom this Bruins team is deep and each player has a role and they are playing that role to perfection. No pun intended.
Tampa Bay Lightning
Then there is the Tampa Bay Lightning. The three-time defending Eastern Conference Champions are showing why they have been to the Stanley Cup final three years in a row. Nikita Kucherov and Steven Stamkos are racking up the points as they led the team on a four-game winning. Though it came to an end, the Lightning are playing a much better team game. Especially on defence, the loss of Ryan McDonagh was huge forcing other players into positions they were not comfortable in. Mikhail Sergachev filled the role of McDonagh on the second defence pairing. He struggled early on to adjust to his new role, but has finally settled in.
In addition, players like Nick Paul and Bradon Hagel are more comfortable in Jon Cooper’s system, especially Hagel. He has more points to begin the season than he did when he got traded to the Lightning last season. It is nice to see him scoring as he used to when he was with Chicago. For Tampa Bay, it is about April and the process to get to the playoffs. As they have proven in the last three seasons, they can make deep runs especially when they are clicking.
Then there are the Buffalo Sabres. It is the same old same old with the Sabres. A great start to the season and when the calendar switches to November a losing streak happens. Currently, the Sabres are on an eight-game losing streak as their season slowly slips away again. Buffalo has found ways to continuously lose games. The Sabres need to end this losing streak or else it is another lost season. It does not matter what they do at the end of the season when the games are meaningless, they must win the games now or else they will join Columbus, Arizona, Anaheim, and Vancouver with their seasons being over in November once again.
Ep 38: NHL Season Preview: Golden Knights, Maple Leafs, Johnny Gaudreauby Full Press Coverage on September 28, 2022 at 3:37 am
Mike, Jim, and Chris return for a new season of Full Press Hockey Weekly […]
Hot Topics: Hockey Hall of Fame Debate, Offside Review, World Cup of Hockeyby Full Press Coverage on November 21, 2022 at 1:00 pm
Jim is back once again joined by Chris Wassel as they discuss hot topics […]
Ep 78: Mitchell Miller Fiasco Reaction; What Do The Bruins Do Next?by Full Press Coverage on November 7, 2022 at 10:37 pm
Ian and Chris react to the Mitchell Miller signing fiasco and discuss what […]
Ep 77: Bruins Are On A Roll To Start The Season; Time To Adjust Expectations?by Full Press Coverage on October 29, 2022 at 4:13 pm
Ian and Chris are back to discuss the Bruins blistering start to the […]
S4Ep11 - Teams in Contention - Winnipeg Jets, Seattle Kraken, Vancouver Canucks, and Montreal Canadiensby Jim Biringer on November 29, 2022 at 12:00 pm
Jim is back for a fourth season of the Final Word of Hockey as he brings […]
S4Ep10 - Teams on Heaters - New Jersey Devils, St. Louis Blues, Boston Bruins and Tampa Bay Lightningby Jim Biringer on November 21, 2022 at 1:00 pm
Jim is back for the fourth season of the Final Word of Hockey with NHL […]
Episode #120: Started Like Maverick, Now We're Morbiusby Full Press Coverage on November 17, 2022 at 4:02 pm
On this edition of The Calder Farmstead, Sean and Sarah dive into yet […]
On this edition of The Calder Farmstead, Sean and Sarah dive into yet […]
11/28 - Week 12 Recap, Brady, Rodgers, and Much Moreby Full Press Coverage on November 28, 2022 at 2:52 pm
Ian and John recap Week 12 in the NFL and discuss Brady and the Bucs, […]
11/25 - Thanksgiving Day Reaction; Week 12 Preview and Picksby Full Press Coverage on November 25, 2022 at 2:29 pm
Ian and John react to an entertaining Thanksgiving Day slate of games and […]
11/22 - 49ers Roll On MNF, NFL Buy or Sell, Week 11 Reactionby Full Press Coverage on November 22, 2022 at 2:34 pm
Ian and John discuss the 49ers win over the Cardinals and play a little […]