sigh. deep breath.
ok - i've been crazy busy for the last couple of days and haven't had time to check in lately but I'm going to have to pull the big brother card here.
1) These guys don't get that your prone to hysterics as a defense mechanism against optimism and that you honestly believe about 20% of what you're saying but will push it not to be a troll, but just to guard you from reality, positivity or common sense.
2) Trouba - since he's the topic du jour. I was just as furious that he both did not come to NJ and went to the Rangers (probably more mad about the latter) and then that the deal was for peanuts. But there are FACTS that need to be considered. While the Devils could have beat the deal with quantity on the quality side, they did not have the 20th pick and the Jets wanted back in the 1st round THIS year. They wanted a defenseman. Our comparable based on cost and efficiency isn't butcher - it's meuller (or santini) and perhaps those were not guys Winnipeg wanted. It has been reported that Trouba gave the Jets two teams he'd be ok being traded to. And yes - he's an RFA, but by saying these are the teams i will sign with (whether a short term or long term), he is in fact saying where he's going.
3) Ray not spending money and valuing cap space - what options has he had? He offered more for Shattenkirk, JVR, and Maroon than they signed for which would have all been bad signings. Thank God we didn't get any of those to agree. So it's not that he's cheap. It's like the comment he made about offer sheets - "you've got to get the player to sign the fvcking thing." When you've been scorned by offers, that's when you publicly say, 'that's fine - we've got cap space which is super valuable." I don't know what will make you more mad - when Ray signs Jake Gardiner for 7/7.5 or when he doesn't. The current UFA market has some names that are interesting for sure (duschene, panarin, nyquist, lee for forwards | gardiner and my preferred Jordie Benn on defense). But there are still only so many roster spots for players. we agree that ideally, the devils need two top 6 forwards and 2 top 4 dmen to get to the next level (ideally one top line dman and a second pairing guy). well you've got one of your new top 6 forwards in hughes. and more than likely, you've got the 2nd pairing dman in ty smith. in my perfect world, sign jordie benn and trade for a decent top 6 forward with either cap space or draft picks/prospects.
4) It sucks to admit, but the Devils are not a marquee destination to play for. Think about the players that have had long careers here - these were established family guys that made ties to the area and got above rate contracts. Sure, winning changes things and by all accounts, the players are treated extremely well by the organization and given top of the line facilities and resources. But honestly - the Devils are lumped in with Carolina, Ottawa, Winnepeg,Columbus, Arizona, and Edmonton as the least desirable locals to play in. So that's why its develop your own and trade as the best way to build a strong organization. You have to make winning the allure to have people want to sign here or ask to be traded here
5) The analytics strawman argument you keep going back to - you make it seem like an exaggerated version of @Triumph is running the analytics department (PS - where has Tri been?).
6) Re: ben lovejoy return- i heard he's pretty sure he's done in the NHL and that he might get a PTO but the odds on a contract are remote. supposedly he asked the devils about becoming a coach but wasn't greenlighted at this time.