Despite the small surge, the Devils are still last in the overall standings, six points behind the Islanders and 24 points behind Atlanta for the last playoff spot in the East. The last 4 games have been nice but just a little too late.
It's clear to me that there's definitely reason to believe the Devils are doing better in the second period under Lemaire. While the Devils are being out-scored in second periods under Lemaire, it's not by much. Moreover, the goals for rate has improved while the goals against rate is dramatically lower. The other big difference is in shots. While it may be due to score effects, the Devils have out-shot their collective opposition in the second period, whereas the opposition had the advantage under MacLean.
It doesn't need to be said again, but we'll say it anyway. The Penguins have won 10 straight games, and they don't even have a second line. Malkin is banged up, Staal's hand almost fell off. Two weeks from now, a healthy Malkin and Staal will be added to a team on a roll.
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Chris Kunitz – Dustin Jeffrey – Pascal Dupuis
Matt Cooke – Jordan Staal – Tyler Kennedy
Mike Rupp – Max Talbot – Chris Conner
Craig Adams – Mark Letestu – Arron Asham
Brooks Orpik – Kris Letang
Paul Martin – Zbynek Michalek
Alex Goligoski – Deryk Engelland
Ilya Kovalchuk – Travis Zajac – Nick Palmieri
Brian Rolston – Patrik Elias – Dainius Zubrus
Vladimir Zharkov – Jason Arnott – Mattias Tedenby
Rod Pelley – Tim Sestito – David Clarkson
Colin White – Andy Greene
Anton Volchenkov – Mark Fraser
Henrik Tallinder – Mark Fayne