Larsson, our first round pick whom PDB refuses to play and has been wasting away in the minors. I actually didn't think Larsson would be a fit for this team, I was hoping for Coutourier. And don't get me started on Tedenby.
My point was the players we have drafted for the past 10 years have not made the impact we were expecting. I do hope Henrique becomes a very good player for this team but how many busted picks have we had for every Henrique? Nearly every first round pick sans Parise has been underwhelming. And the picks after the first round havent been great either. Zajac is a nice player, not a great player, ditto for Greene. Every team has them. Same for Merrill, Severson, and Fayne. As for firepower, our best players are Elias and Jagr (Ages 38 and 42 respectively). Again, i hope Henrique becomes an offensive weapon but that's a wildcard at this point.
As for free agents and player trades, I was happy we landed Kovy (not his contract) but that move was so out of character for Lou and his MO since the lockout has been signing utility players and then going after ex-Devils. Kovy was the exception. Putting Kovy aside, you'll never see this team acquire a forward like Jeff Carter via a trade. It's just not Lou's style.
As for Schneider, I'm with you on that 100%. I hope he becomes the man here. That's assuming of course that Brodeur leaves. I'm not so sure he will, despite his quotes in the papers about testing free agency. Will be interesting to see what transpires this offseason.
The players the Devils have drafted in the last 10 years have almost always been in the bottom 10 picks of the 1st round. It is really difficult to find star players there. So no, the Devils haven't drafted particularly well, but it isn't easy to draft well from there, and when you don't draft well, you create a vicious cycle where you are short draft picks every year because you have to patch holes on your roster every year. NJ used to draft so well that they created a virtuous cycle - they would be able to sell players who weren't able to make the team for draft picks. That's not happening anymore, in part because the league has caught up to some of the things NJ tends to do.
'Putting Kovy aside, you'll never see this team acquire a forward like Jeff Carter' Hurr durr. How about Jason Arnott, who was like Jeff Carter but without the years of NHL success? How about Peter Stastny, Joe Nieuwendyk, and Doug Gilmour? The Devils haven't had the kind of players that help you get a player like this and that's why they haven't done it. And I agree that Carter specifically, I don't think Lou would trade for a player with an 11 year contract, but those are illegal now. I mean you can't on the one hand run down NJ's drafting in the last 10 years then wonder why they haven't gotten a Jeff Carter type player. You can't run down Lou's free agent acquisitions and wonder why he couldn't acquire other, better players in free agency - he uses free agency just like any other general manager now. He's signed players who haven't played for NJ to 5 and 6 year deals. It's hard to keep winning in the NHL.