Over the last few years, many Devils fans (including myself) were growing increasingly impatient with Lou. Whether it was the fact that Larsson, or insert other defensive prospect, wasn't getting enough playing time because they were blocked by a vet or that Lou wasn't exactly the most proactive in re-signing players before July 1st, annoyance with LL was understandable. Fast forward to now:
What fans wanted- To see the 2014-2015 Devils feature a blueline with Merrill, Larsson and Gelinas.
What happened- Lou let Fayne go via free agency and used the second compliance buyout on Anton Volchenkov
Potential consequences- The thing with young players is you're not quite sure what you're going to get. Aside from Larsson, neither of the "big three" has played more than 60 games and AL has been in and out of the lineup. Obviously the potential on all of them is sky-high but there is certainly a risk there. If one or even two of them flop, the Devils don't have a safety net in Albany. If they wanted to go out and get some insurance there aren't many appealing UFA dmen left.
What fans wanted- Lou to sign Cory Schneider and Andy Greene to contract extensions this summer
What happened- Lou signed Cory Schneider and Andy Greene to contract extensions this summer
Potential consequences- Everything points to Schneider being a fantastic goalie and we've seen first hand what he can do. Fact is, we would've gotten more information this year to see if he can shoulder the load and play 60+ games. There is a risk here that he can't but it's definitely a worthwhile gamble. With Greene, the money is fine but the term could up to be a disaster. I don't want to think about where the Devils defense would be without him (short term).
What fans wanted- Lou to go out and get a top 6 forward via free agency
What happened- The Devils signed 32 year old forward Mike Cammalleri to a 5 year, 25 million dollar contract
Potential consequences- You're unlikely to get a bargain when you go out and get talent on July 1st but I think Lou did pretty well here. Got a good goal scorer with speed to play on the first line. Money isn't terrible but that term could be a problem, especially with a forward who relies on speed. From all accounts, Cammalleri takes very good care of his body and hopefully can stay healthy and productive for most of that contract.
It seems that most of Lou's offseason moves coincided with Devils Nation's wants. We got our wish to see Larsson, Gelinas and Merrill get their chance without a veteran breathing down our neck, Schneider and Greene will be Devils for a long time and we got a player we desperately needed on July 1st. A great cloud of uncertainty has been omnipresent for the last 5 years and it doesn't appear to be leaving any time soon. We got what we wanted, but are we ready for the consequences if thing go wrong?