Do the New Jersey Devils actually blow more runs than other teams?
The New Jersey Devils lost a two-goal lead to the Carolina Hurricanes on Saturday with just five minutes left in the game. It feels like deja vu because it absolutely is. The Devils lost their fair share of leads during the season. This is what happens when a team has a major problem with the goalkeeper. Things get tough when the team is in the lead.
However, is this a Devils problem, or is it exaggerated because there are far fewer returns to accompany the meltdowns?
It seems to be the latter. According to Natual Stat Trick, the Devils allowed 55 goals in 984 minutes while leading. The Philadelphia Flyers and Chicago Blackhawks, two teams as bad as the Devils, allowed the same 55 goals in 30 and 90 minutes less respectively.
So the Devils don’t seem to play that differently than other teams when they’re up front. Is this an NHL-wide problem? Anyway, let’s solve one problem at a time.
Let’s look at the odds now. The Devils actually have a high positive danger chance percentage when they’re in the league. In those same 984 minutes, they have 207 high-risk league chances. They gave up only 179 high-risk chances. Only four other teams in the league have a better percentage when it comes to this specific stat.
So what’s going on? Well, again, nothing that doesn’t happen to other teams. The Devils’ losses come in a more dramatic way and the goaltender of choice doesn’t help matters. Let’s go back to the Panthers game where the Devils lost a four-goal lead and lost in overtime. They allowed five straight goals in the third period and overtime to a team that went crazy offensively.
The Devils practiced well in the third period as they led by four points. They only had nine total even-strength chances and gave up 20 of them. It’s even worse when it comes to high-danger chances. They crashed 7-0 in that span, and that’s how they lost their minds.
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It looks like the blown threads seem to hurt more. They sting, and that sting doesn’t go away quickly. However, this is not a lasting problem. A good trainer can solve this problem.