Forward Mike Cammalleri has finally broken through during the 2016-17 NHL season. What does it mean for the New Jersey Devils?
The New Jersey Devils have been playing game after game without the aid of one of their biggest All-Stars, Mike Cammalleri. This isn’t to say he was hurt or otherwise absent from the ice. He just hasn’t produced on the ice. This was the case until Sunday night’s early evening game against the Carolina Hurricanes.
This was the case until Sunday night’s early evening game against the Carolina Hurricanes.
Both teams going scoreless through the first, the Devils came out hungry to break the game open. On a two-on-two rush up the ice, just a few minutes into the frame, Cammalleri broke the scoring open as well as his scoring drought with a beautiful pass between four Hurricanes from Travis Zajac. Minutes later, Cammalleri struck again on an odd-man rush. Unbalanced, the Devils number 23 roofed a wrist shot passed Carolina’s Eddie Lack to extend the lead.
Following a monotone remaining 12 minutes of the second period, with the exception of a few key saves from Keith Kinkaid, the Devils went into the final twenty holding the 2-0 lead.
About eight minutes into the third period, the flourishing forward had one thing in mind, completing the natural hat trick. On yet another odd man rush, Cammalleri took matters into his own hands again, snapping another wrist shot to the opposite corner from behind the circle.
After losing the chance for a shutout late in the third period, Carolina’s net unprotected, the game ended on a Hail Mary empty netter by the captain, Andy Greene.
Mike Cammalleri is exactly what fans saw from him in Raleigh Sunday — a goal scorer that knows how to get the job done on his own if need be.
After taking the cross-ice pass for his first goal, confidence restored, he took the two shots, upon odd man rushes, on his own terms without passing the puck. Cammalleri has a good perspective of the men around him on the ice, as well as an overall understanding of the game. If Cammalleri can keep his own engine running, younger stars, Adam Henrique and Taylor Hall, will follow.
As for goaltending, Kinkaid proved he could keep his own if the scoring is provided. With the offense scoring goals, and the goaltending tandem strong, the Devils are looking closer and closer at the top three spots in the Metropolitan Division.