DAB Pregame: Devils at the Rangers

September 18, 2019 - Devils Army Blog - View Full Article


On Monday, New Jersey Devils fans got what they had been waiting seemingly forever for; P.K. Subban, Jack Hughes, and Nikita Gusev all wearing Devils sweaters together on home ice. 

Related: DAB Recap: Devils Split First Two Preseason Games

Better yet, Devils fans got to see Jack Hughes net the puck twice, the big one being a give and go from Nikita Gusev in 3-on-3 overtime.

The First Battle

After a split-squad against the Boston Bruins and Montreal Canadiens on Monday night, the Devils meet the beloved new additions in New York for a showdown with the Rangers. It’s the ultimate pre-season matchup because both teams are highly touted for their prospects who will get a chance to showcase themselves in a rivalry game.

For the Rangers it’s Kaapo Kakko, Adam Fox, and Vitali Kravtsov trying to impress, while Artemi Panarin and Jacob Trouba settle into their new home. For the Devils, we’ll see prospects Jesper Boqvist and Ty Smith prove their NHL readiness, as Nikita Gusev acquaints himself with the New York-New Jersey rivalry. Unfortunately, we won’t get to see Taylor Hall, Jack Hughes, P.K. Subban, or Wayne Simmonds, but it will be a big game in deciding who makes the team. Nevertheless, here are the lineups for tonight’s game in New York:

Projected Lines

Devils

Rangers

What to Watch

Since this is the Rangers first preseason game, they’re playing many of their best players, giving us a glimpse of what New Jersey will face during the regular season. I wouldn’t expect a win without Hall, Hughes, and Subban, but I’m confident Nico Hischier and the hungry prospects will keep this competitive. Pay special attention to Ty Smith, since the young defenseman will have to step up this year to improve the Devils’ defense. Also watch for big forward John Hayden, acquired in the John Quenneville trade with Chicago, who will compete to make the opening night roster.

Where to watch

7:00PM; MSG, MSG+

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Devils Need To Bring Back “Catch Fire”

September 17, 2019 - Devils Army Blog - View Full Article

Introduction

Last week, I told everyone that we should make “Born To Run” by Bruce Springsteen the New Jersey Devils’ new goal song. Before you could even say blinded by the light, the comments section on my article was bombarded with a plethora of DAB readers coming out of the woodwork to unite against my humble, Jersey-driven petition. Luckily, It didn’t faze me. Nothing will ever back me down from my intense love and support for all things Bruce Springsteen.

However, with the E-Street band controversy brewing in my mind, another topic of debate came about. This past weekend, two of my friends engaged in a friendly debate about which is the better hockey hype song:  “Gloria” or “Chelsea Daggers”. I entered the conversation somewhere between my fourth or fifth mango White Claw (the shortage is fake news) and added a third, dark horse candidate to the race: “Catch Fire.” Of course, this was the Devils’ warm-up song from the 1980s.

For Those Who Don’t Know What I’m Talking About

Amid all the digital pitchforks and torches fighting against my Springsteen article, one brave soul stood out on Twitter. He said that the Devils should bring back “Catch Fire”. This was the warm-up, not goal song from the franchise’s early days in the 1980s. While the song makes a stray appearance once and a while during retro nights, it’s been largely mothballed as a relic of the organizations past, similar to the trap style of hockey and Chico’s Eats. Thanks to the modern miracle of YouTube, we can take a listen to it here. Yes, I know the music video is outdated; I am very well aware Bobby Holik is no longer on the team.

But How Would It Work?

Let me set the scene for you; it’s game night and you’re at the Rock. After you just ponied up $15 for a BudLight tallboy, you make your way to your seats as the team heads out from warm-ups. As Corey Schneider (for sake of my storytelling, let’s assume he’s the number one) leads the team out on the ice and you hear that 1980s drum intro. As P.K. Subban steps out of the ice you hear a glorious Reagan Era chorus start singing “CATCH FIRE!”

Quite honestly, I don’t think anything would intimidate the opposing team more. They might pack up right then and there for the next flight out of Newark Airport and forfeit. No way they’re coming back to win after that.

The Devils wore these throwback jerseys last season. (NHL.com)

A Few Reasons Why We Probably Shouldn’t

Yes, the song is a part of a bygone era in our team’s history. Back then, the likes of Kirk Muller, Brendan Shanahan, and Ken Danyeko were at the helm instead of Taylor Hall, Nico Hischier, and Jack Hughes. Not to mention, not a lot of winning was done when that song played either. Then again, much winning wasn’t done when our team colors were red and green, but the fan base still loved those jerseys anyway.

It’s No “Chelsea Dagger”, But I Still Want To Hear It!

Okay, maybe this song is from the past and deserves to stay there. Still, I see no reason why it shouldn’t come out once in a while. After all, nobody expected the last-place St. Louis Blues to adopt a bygone hit from the 1980s en route to the Stanley Cup, did they? After all, the only thing that could make “Catch Fire” better is if Bruce Springsteen himself sang it. I am looking at you, Ray Shero. If you can pull off an Adam Larsson for Taylor Hall trade, you can convince Springsteen to make some sweet music for the Rock!

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