Lichtenstein: Axing Hynes Won’t Change Flawed Devils Prospects

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“This was my fault, too.”

The above were words that Devils general manager Ray Shero did not use when explaining his decision to fire coach John Hynes prior to Tuesday night’s home tilt versus Las Vegas. Alain Nasreddine, Hynes’ longtime assistant, took over on an interim basis, debuting with a 4-3 loss to the Golden Knights.

I can understand why Shero was moved to axe Hynes, who had been the longest-tenured coach among the nine New York-area pro sports teams. Consecutive no-show performances against the Rangers at home and in Buffalo dropped New Jersey to 9-13-4. Their 22 points rank next to last in the NHL. 

Rarely is a match these days as one-sided as Monday’s. The Devils were down 5-0 to the Sabres after one period in a game in which Shero said, “We can’t make a 5-foot pass.”

John HynesBruce Bennett/Getty Images

Saving Hynes from further humiliation in front of angry Prudential Center fans is one thing, but Shero basically threw Hynes under the bus Tuesday. 

“When you’ve got 23 players that aren’t playing at the level nearly that I (expected),” Shero said. “I think they’re better than this.”

Not once did Shero say, “Maybe some of these guys — the guys I drafted, signed or traded for — aren’t as good as I thought they were.”

When is it his turn to point the finger at himself?