Why Martin Brodeur's Injury Has Helped the Devils

Michael SamuelSenior Analyst IJanuary 30, 2009

As a lifelong Devils fan, I thought that I could never say this about the control-the-puck-to-the-red-line-and-dump Devils, but this offense right now is absolutely clicking.

Every move coach Brent Sutter and general manager Lou Lamoriello have made has paid dividends.

Bringing back Brendan Shanahan, who has two goals in his first three games, has worked out.

Zach Parise has been able to shine like he never has before in earning a trip to Montreal for his first All-Star game.

According to ESPN.com, the Devils are tied for fifth in the NHL in plus-minus at even strength.

This means that New Jersey isn't so reliant upon power-play goals. The Devils now have a legitimate offensive threat and their games aren't going to be all about defense and goaltending. 

Having Martin Brodeur at this veteran age, it will be easier for him to hit his stride once April and the playoffs come around.

In the past two postseasons, particularly last season against the Rangers, he looked old, as well as intimidated by the idiot of the NHL, Sean Avery. Now Brodeur will have all of his energy saved to try and gear up and tie Patrick Roy with four Stanley Cup titles. 

This Devils team has character and leadership which is embodied by Captain Jamie Langenbrunner, who had two goals in the overtime victory against Eastern Conference-leading Boston.

This Devils team has a nice mix of veterans Langenbrunner, Patrik Elias and Jay Pandolfo. Elias has tapped into the fountain of youth, as coming into Friday's action he had 56 points, good for second on the team behind Parise (57).

Scott Clemmensen has taken his 2.27 GAA and been a stable force for the Devils between the pipes. He has done more than just keep them in contention, rather he has put them in the position to capture the No. 2 seed in the East.

On March 1, Martin Brodeur is supposed to start skating again. With Brodeur healthy for the playoffs, this could be a team that no one wants to face.