Back to New Jersey...in a new jersey

Friday, 02.08.2008 / 12:00 PM / Features
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Back to New Jersey...in a new jersey

By Adam Brady
AnaheimDucks.com

Only three current Ducks – Jean-Sebastien Giguere, Rob Niedermayer and Samuel Pahlsson – were with the team during its last visit to New Jersey. That came in Game 7 of the 2003 Stanley Cup Final, when the Devils vanquished the Ducks 3-0 to take the Cup.

Niedermayer won three Stanley Cups in 13 seasons with the Devils.

One of the leaders of that Devils team was Ducks defenseman Scott Niedermayer, who makes his first return to New Jersey since signing with Anaheim in the summer of ’05. The 34-year-old Niedermayer played his first 13 NHL seasons in New Jersey, helping the Devils to three Stanley Cups along the way, the last coming in ’03.

“I’m excited,” Niedermayer said. “It’s going to be interesting the see the reception from the fans. To play there as long as I did and to come back again is very exciting. I’m looking forward to it.”

Only 10 of Niedermayer’s former teammates remain with the Devils, so the team looks a bit different from when he was there. So does the building, as this year the Devils moved into the brand new Prudential Center in Newark, a far cry from their former home, Continental Airlines Arena in the Meadowlands.

“I’m anxious to see the new building,” Niedermayer said. “I’ve heard good things about it. It won’t have the memories Continental Arena did. It will change the experience, but there will be familiar faces in the crowd.”

Some of that crowd might give Niedermayer a chilly reception tonight, still bitter over his leaving the team as a free agent to play with his brother Rob in Anaheim. “My expectations are pretty wide open about that,” Niedermayer said. “I’m sure there will be some boos, but that’s not going to change my outlook and my memories.”

There isn’t any resentment held by Niedermayer’s former teammates, including All-Star goalie Martin Brodeur. “Regardless of how educated the fans are about that situation, there are so many good memories about him being here with us,” Brodeur said. “He’s an unbelievable player, the top offensive defenseman I’ve played with. He’s such a great player and a great guy. He’s a guy that came to play every night, a guy that should never get booed.”

Though Niedermayer is gone, there is a still a No. 27 in red in New Jersey, but now it’s being worn by defenseman Mike Mottau. But Devils GM Lou Lamoriello said earlier in the week that Niedermayer’s jersey would someday be retired by the team “without question, because of what he brought to the organization while he was here. He represented this organization with the highest ability and class you can ask of anyone.”

Typical of Niedermayer, he says he doesn’t think too much about that. “That’s a consideration for other people when I retire,” said Niedermayer, who join the Ducks in December after contemplating retirement following his fourth Stanley Cup title last June. “I have a lot of great memories. What more could you ask for that being part of three Stanley Cup teams? I made a lot of great friends, had a lot of great teammates.”

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 z - ANA 82 54 20 8 266 209 116
2 y - COL 82 52 22 8 250 220 112
3 x - STL 82 52 23 7 248 191 111
4 x - SJS 82 51 22 9 249 200 111
5 x - CHI 82 46 21 15 267 220 107
6 x - LAK 82 46 28 8 206 174 100
7 x - MIN 82 43 27 12 207 206 98
8 x - DAL 82 40 31 11 235 228 91
9 PHX 82 37 30 15 216 231 89
10 NSH 82 38 32 12 216 242 88
11 WPG 82 37 35 10 227 237 84
12 VAN 82 36 35 11 196 223 83
13 CGY 82 35 40 7 209 241 77
14 EDM 82 29 44 9 203 270 67

STATS

2013-2014 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
R. Getzlaf 77 31 56 28 87
C. Perry 81 43 39 32 82
N. Bonino 77 22 27 14 49
M. Perreault 69 18 25 13 43
A. Cogliano 82 21 21 13 42
C. Fowler 70 6 30 15 36
K. Palmieri 71 14 17 9 31
D. Winnik 76 6 24 6 30
H. Lindholm 78 6 24 29 30
S. Koivu 65 11 18 3 29
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
F. Andersen 20 5 0 .923 2.29
J. Hiller 29 13 7 .911 2.48


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