Lamoriello says Lemaire will return as Devils’ coach
Lou Lamoriello is generally considered the best GM in the business. He’s created a franchise that has been insanely successful, built on great defense and goaltending and one that has remained competitive year after year.
Yet after three straight incredibly disappointing first round exits, especially this year after losing in five games to the Philadelphia Flyers, there are thoughts that big changes should be made. Perhaps the NHL and the game of hockey have passed up the Devils and the system that was used to win Stanley Cups in two of four years is no longer successful in the playoffs.
To me, it seemed that the Devils had the coaching and the skill to be successful this postseason, this was just a team that was directionless and full of players that just weren’t motivated to play as hard as the team they were facing. Is that the coach’s fault? Is Jacques Lemaire to blame for this failure, after the Devils had been building under Brent Sutter? Should the Devils just blow it up, trade Brodeur and move forward?
Today, in a conference call with the media, Lamoriello says that he’s happy with the goaltending and that we should expect Lemaire back in New Jersey next season. Rich Chere of The Star Ledger has the transcript; here’s a taste:
“I am certainly happy with the job Jacques has done. And I’m not unhappy with the effort put in. We just didn’t get thinsg done the way it had to be done. You can go over each and every game and look at the turning points. What was positive and what was negtaive. I’m looking at myself right now. I’m nit even thinking about anything else. I’m evaluating myself the best way I can of what potentially might have been able to be done.”
So the big blow up that some think is needed? Sounds like that won’t happen anytime soon.