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SMantzas

The 2014 NJ Devils Offseason Thread

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You do realize that Schneider is under contract until Summer 2015? Marty will likely not be in the NHL anymore. So no, I refuse to "imagine" these hells that you seem to think up on a hourly basis. Go sit in a dark room some more and cut yourself some more.

Jeezus, lighten up buddy. It was meant as humor.

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My bad, but from you're recent posts, it just seems like pessimism for no real reason. 

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My bad, but from you're recent posts, it just seems like pessimism for no real reason.

Its all good. Nah. Just sarcastic humor to get through this rough stretch I see ahead of us. All kidding aside, I really am worried that Lou will bring back Gionta and he's a bit in denial about how badly this team needs a facelift. I'm not saying "blow it up". But they need a youth movement infused with better quality talent and our drafting for the past several years hasn't been all that impressive. I would be very upset if Schneider left after next year (due to all the Marty drama and looking over his shoulder) because we had Nikushkin there for the taking. Oh well...it's history. Hopefully MB bows out gracefully after this season and we start putting a strong team around Scneider.

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Its all good. Nah. Just sarcastic humor to get through this rough stretch I see ahead of us. All kidding aside, I really am worried that Lou will bring back Gionta and he's a bit in denial about how badly this team needs a facelift. I'm not saying "blow it up". But they need a youth movement infused with better quality talent and our drafting for the past several years hasn't been all that impressive. I would be very upset if Schneider left after next year (due to all the Marty drama and looking over his shoulder) because we had Nikushkin there for the taking. Oh well...it's history. Hopefully MB bows out gracefully after this season and we start putting a strong team around Scneider.

 

The Devils weren't taking Nichushkin (I believe Conte said so somewhere), and while the next 2 years are going to be great for Dallas, after year 3, Nichushkin gets to name his price.  The problem with Russian players isn't that they can leave (although that's no good), it's that they have another league where they can dictate their price.  They cost more than other players, and that's problematic.  I'd be very wary of drafting Russians high in the draft as a result - if Val likes Dallas, great, they get a good price.  If he's not that happy there, they get a bad price.  We already saw Kovalchuk do this with Atlanta - he nabbed a huge contract from them coming out of the lockout.

 

I'm not sure if NJ's under 25 D have ever been better than they are right now.  They've drafted a lot of great forwards in their history - Shanahan's a HOFer, Elias should be but won't be, Parise's got an outside shot at it, Guerin, Muller, Rolston, Sykora were all very good players for a long time, etc. - but their D drafting historically is good, not great - it's Niedermayer and a lot of defensive D types.  Gelinas, Merrill, Larsson, Severson - none of them may be a star, but all should be NHL players, and then you've got Scarlett and Santini who might be NHLers too.

 

I don't know why it's terrifying that Gionta might come back.  He's a 3rd line player at this point and will be compensated as such.  He'll get 2 years/7 million or thereabouts and should be counted on for 15 goals and 15 assists and good defensive play.  

Edited by Triumph

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The Devils weren't taking Nichushkin (I believe Conte said so somewhere), and while the next 2 years are going to be great for Dallas, after year 3, Nichushkin gets to name his price.  The problem with Russian players isn't that they can leave (although that's no good), it's that they have another league where they can dictate their price.  They cost more than other players, and that's problematic.  I'd be very wary of drafting Russians high in the draft as a result - if Val likes Dallas, great, they get a good price.  If he's not that happy there, they get a bad price.  We already saw Kovalchuk do this with Atlanta - he nabbed a huge contract from them coming out of the lockout.

 

I'm not sure if NJ's under 25 D have ever been better than they are right now.  They've drafted a lot of great forwards in their history - Shanahan's a HOFer, Elias should be but won't be, Parise's got an outside shot at it, Guerin, Muller, Rolston, Sykora were all very good players for a long time, etc. - but their D drafting historically is good, not great - it's Niedermayer and a lot of defensive D types.  Gelinas, Merrill, Larsson, Severson - none of them may be a star, but all should be NHL players, and then you've got Scarlett and Santini who might be NHLers too.

 

I don't know why it's terrifying that Gionta might come back.  He's a 3rd line player at this point and will be compensated as such.  He'll get 2 years/7 million or thereabouts and should be counted on for 15 goals and 15 assists and good defensive play.  

 

i hadn't heard they weren't taking Nichushkin anywhere - i'd think i'd remember that. i do know they did say they didn't think he'd be there anyway, but that publicly they've stated it didn't matter because lou had already decided to get schneider a week or so before the draft with that pick.

 

the russian factor is certainly something to be concerned with for the younger kids - but the devils F drafting has been abysmal for the last 9 years outside of henrique and MAYBE josefson.

 

as for gionta, i would hate it because it doesn't solve a need. it smacks of lou "going with what he knows." that being said, lou went off book plenty last offseason and i was on board with all of it (except for the length of clowe's deal - i was fine with the signing even if his career was lost to scrambled brains because insurance would cover it).

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Forgive me if this has been discussed, but can we restructure Clowe? I like Clowe and want to keep him, but I don't see him being much more than a 3rd liner for the rest of his stay with us, and to get paid what he is for being a third liner is absurd. Can we move some of his money around and give it to who deserves it? (Schneider)

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Restructuring isn't allowed.

 

Also, as it pertains to Gionta - I just don't see where he fits. Even on the third line. I think we already his role filled with Ruutu wouldn't you say? I feel like the third liners we have enough of. If somehow we clear out Zubrus and Ryder, I'd maybe consider it.

 

But as I see it our third liners consist of Ryder, Zubrus, Clowe, Ruutu and probably Brunner...where does Gio fit?

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I'm not sure if NJ's under 25 D have ever been better than they are right now.  They've drafted a lot of great forwards in their history - Shanahan's a HOFer, Elias should be but won't be, Parise's got an outside shot at it, Guerin, Muller, Rolston, Sykora were all very good players for a long time, etc. - but their D drafting historically is good, not great - it's Niedermayer and a lot of defensive D types.  Gelinas, Merrill, Larsson, Severson - none of them may be a star, but all should be NHL players, and then you've got Scarlett and Santini who might be NHLers too.

It's up to the young forwards we have in the system now that will determine whether we "accept mediocrity" or not.  Guys like Boucher, Kujiwinski, Bell, Black, Matteau, these guys have to take the next step in their developments this upcoming year if we want to be successful.  Yeah, maybe we can bring in a free agent that can really help the offense.  To support this I'd look back at 05-06 when Parise and Zajac were coming into the league.  Here were first round picks who came into the NHL and began to contribute at a young age.  The team did well because they already had  strong team and base for these particular young guys to come in and succeed.  It's up to these young players to step up this year and begin to contribute because we found out this year what happens when you rely solely on free agents to pick up slack.  We had Olesz, Brunner, Clowe, Jagr, Ryder, and the only one who really impressed and carried his weight was Jagr and maybe Clowe. 

On a side note, I think Clowe can play on the 2nd line with some speedier guys such as Patty and Henrique.  I see Clowe as one of our top 6 guys as long as he's healthy.  He looked really good with Zajac and Jagr before his concussion.  So through those "3rd liners", we have Zubrus, Ruutu, Brunner, and Ryder.  I agree that one of Brunner, Ryder, or Zubrus should be moved, they're dead weight holding the team back from acquiring new talent AND keeping these younger guys from making the roster. 

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clowe needs to stay healthy.. if he can figure out how to do that then i think he could be of some value to us.. but at this point in his career he is nothing more than damaged goods and im almost hoping he ends up retiring.. these concussions are not going to stop with him and he is absolutely no use to us constantly being out with an injury

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clowe needs to stay healthy.. if he can figure out how to do that then i think he could be of some value to us.. but at this point in his career he is nothing more than damaged goods and im almost hoping he ends up retiring.. these concussions are not going to stop with him and he is absolutely no use to us constantly being out with an injury

If Clowe gets another concussion, Lou will "ask"  him to retire. My fear is Clowe (like Lindros) changes and plays a "safer" game (not as aggressive" in corners etc. I don't think Clowe will get through the year w/out extended injury time a couple times. 

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if clowe "changes" his game he will be useless.. we need him to be that enforcer type rough player

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if clowe "changes" his game he will be useless.. we need him to be that enforcer type rough player

Ehh, I don't think Clowe has played that physical at all since he's been here. 

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Ehh, I don't think Clowe has played that physical at all since he's been here. 

 

Clowe was 2nd on the team in hits per game among forwards (Ruutu was first) and led the team in fights despite only playing half the games.  He's definitely signed to play physical.

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Clowe was 2nd on the team in hits per game among forwards (Ruutu was first) and led the team in fights despite only playing half the games.  He's definitely signed to play physical.

I stand corrected.

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http://www.nj.com/devils/index.ssf/2014/05/why_arent_the_devils_in_the_stanley_cup_final_instead_of_the_rangers.html

Some interesting comments from Pete here.

“Lou and I still are going through the debrief stage. We’ve had a few conversations and I’ve written some thoughts down that he’s requested,” DeBoer said. “At the end of the day, Lou and I think the same way. We see the game the same way. There is not an radical differences of opinion that I see on what we both feel we need to do to get better.”

“I think there are going to be some tough calls with our defense because of the depth we have there. Absolutely,” DeBoer suggested. “Obviously we haven’t been good enough the last two years, so I think as a staff we have to look internally at what we can do better or differently and we’re going through that exercise over the summer.

“You’re always looking for change. We played the Rangers in the conference finals two years ago. Look at the changes they’ve made to their group to try and get over the hump. I’m not saying that we need to make any wholesale changes, but I think changes on both ends— some personnel and some style of play looking for different advantages— are what every team that doesn’t win goes through.”

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anyone hear anything about devils pursuing mike richards (since kings might trade him to re-sign gaborik) or pk subban (if he can't be re-signed)

Edited by grcenter47

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http://www.nj.com/devils/index.ssf/2014/05/why_arent_the_devils_in_the_stanley_cup_final_instead_of_the_rangers.html

Some interesting comments from Pete here.

“Lou and I still are going through the debrief stage. We’ve had a few conversations and I’ve written some thoughts down that he’s requested,” DeBoer said. “At the end of the day, Lou and I think the same way. We see the game the same way. There is not an radical differences of opinion that I see on what we both feel we need to do to get better.”

“I think there are going to be some tough calls with our defense because of the depth we have there. Absolutely,” DeBoer suggested. “Obviously we haven’t been good enough the last two years, so I think as a staff we have to look internally at what we can do better or differently and we’re going through that exercise over the summer.

“You’re always looking for change. We played the Rangers in the conference finals two years ago. Look at the changes they’ve made to their group to try and get over the hump. I’m not saying that we need to make any wholesale changes, but I think changes on both ends— some personnel and some style of play looking for different advantages— are what every team that doesn’t win goes through.”

We'll see what they do in free agency. If Lou signs Brian Gionta and management lets Larsson rot in the minors and continues to favor the vets over youth, it'll likely be business as usual. Talk is cheap. Let's see Lou and PDB actually make these changes they're speaking of. Edited by slasher72

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Larsson will most certainly be nowhere near the minors any more, as he's no longer waiver eligible.

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anyone hear anything about devils pursuing mike richards (since kings might trade him to re-sign gaborik) or pk subban (if he can't be re-signed)

No way on both counts.

Assets to acquire Richards would be huge. And the Habs would have to be absolutely insane to not give PK a blank check.

Sent from my SCH-I545 using Tapatalk

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No way on both counts.

Assets to acquire Richards would be huge. And the Habs would have to be absolutely insane to not give PK a blank check.

Sent from my SCH-I545 using Tapatalk

 

who do you think realistically the devils will try to get.... vanek? raymond? stastny? moulson? cammalleri?

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iam not getting my hopes up at all what so ever.. i just dont think we will get any descent fa .. for example someone a lot of us would like to have stastny would be getting way too big of a pay day for lou to even be a bidder and i doubt he would even have any interest in coming here... be prepared for the gionta brothers..probably about as exciting as its going to get.

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with the success of the rags, and the fact we've missed the playoffs two seasons in a row now, I hope Lou has a little more urgency to get this team competitive ASAP

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with the success of the rags, and the fact we've missed the playoffs two seasons in a row now, I hope Lou has a little more urgency to get this team competitive ASAP

the problem is what he thinks its going to take to get competitive compared to what we all think its really going to take are kind of 2 different things... i think he believes he pretty much has the pieces he needs to be competitive

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We are competitive. Most of the league is competitive, the nature of parity.

 

If anything I'd say you can't worry about the NYR or Chicago or whoever. You need to look at our roster and do what you can to improve it piece by piece without making a mistep. It's a very hard job.

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the problem is what he thinks its going to take to get competitive compared to what we all think its really going to take are kind of 2 different things... i think he believes he pretty much has the pieces he needs to be competitive

but Lou knows we need scoring and we need some speed...he has to bring in some help

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