As announced earlier by the Devils, F Jacob Josefson has been placed on IR for a concussion, retroactively to December 17th. Defenseman Seth Helgeson has been recalled from Albany and will make his season debut in tonight's matchup against the Flyers.
New Jersey has placed F Jacob Josefson (concussion) on IR, retroactive to Dec. 17. The club has recalled D Seth Helgeson from Albany (AHL). pic.twitter.com/HaSs3Bcg9J— New Jersey Devils (@NJDevils) December 22, 2016
Devils' beat reporter Andrew Gross has the latest from coach John Hynes, who has confirmed Helgeson will be taking Kyle Quincey's spot in the lineup tonight on defense.
Per #Devils coach John Hynes, Seth Helgeson in for Kyle Quincey. Cory Schneider is in net. Vern Fiddler will play tonight.— Andrew Gross (@AGrossRecord) December 22, 2016
Fast, attacking, supportive... Helgeson?
This will be the third season in which Helgeson makes an appearance with the New Jerey Devils. In 41 NHL games over the last two seasons, he has 3 points (all assists) and 35 PIM.
This is not the move Devils fans might have hoped for, as the team has been struggling to score and keep up with their opponents on this losing streak. Helgeson is not the fastest skater and he's also not known for any offensive production.
However, Devils management is probably looking at another missing piece in their game right now. The Devils have not been a particularly tough team to play against lately on a physical level, either, and that's where some toughness with Helgeson can come into play.
Devils GM Ray Shero mentioned this in his latest address to the media.
Also, Ray Shero used "pushback" and "resolve" in describing what the #Devils need more of in their game.— Andrew Gross (@AGrossRecord) December 21, 2016
And NHL.com regional writer (and long-time former Devils beat writer) Tom Gulitti piped with some support as well:
I think they're seeking a solution to the opponents find it easy to play against them physically problem. https://t.co/SrMCaxbZpm— Tom Gulitti (@TomGulittiNHL) December 22, 2016
Devils want to be harder to play against. Helgeson can bring a physical element. https://t.co/xlkI57u3EC— Tom Gulitti (@TomGulittiNHL) December 22, 2016
The Devils started off this season strong, but have come up quite empty as of late. We’re starting to see some of the missing parts to their game, which keeps them from staying competitive.
With this move, I'm happy to see they're addressing the lack of physicality made apparent on this losing streak. But I think it'll take much more than this to turn things around.
Tonight, they face a very strong (and notoriously physical) Flyers team coming off a ten game win-streak and a big win over Washington. Is this the game we see the Devils turn things around?
What's your take on bringing Helgeson back to the NHL? Do you agree that the Devils need more of a physical presence? Would you prefer management focuses on offense, instead?