We’re just a few weeks away from the NHL Trade Deadline, the Devils find themselves right in the midst of the playoff race; something they weren’t in until it was too late last season. As always, there are a lot of rumors and pieces speculating as to what Devils President and General Manager Lou Lamoriello may do at or before the February 27th Deadline. Before I examine what they may do, attempt to do or anything else I will first look at what they will not to.
There’s a lot to get to in this piece so I figure it’s best to break everything up.
First, what New Jersey is NOT going to do at the deadline.
1. The Devils are not going to trade Zach Parise at, or before, the Trade Deadline. It’s not going to happen. The Devils believe they have a solid team and know that if they were to trade Parise their chances of doing anything this season would be significantly decreased. Factor that in, as well as the fact that if they were to trade their Captain it would undoubtedly cause some stirrings in the locker room and I really can’t see him being dealt. Oh, and there is that possibility that nobody talks about where he actually re-signs, too.
2. New Jersey isn’t going to trade for a goaltender, so the Cory Schneider or Jonathan Bernier to New Jersey trade rumors can stop. There is absolutely no chance the Devils will carry three goaltenders and none of their current two goaltenders are moving either. Martin Brodeur has a No-Trade Clause and let’s be serious, there’s no chance he would be traded anyways. Lou Lamoriello is extremely loyal and he wouldn’t even consider moving Brodeur after all he’s done for the franchise. Johan Hedberg took a pay cut to stay in New Jersey in the off-season and has a No-Trade Clause as well.
If New Jersey were to make a move for a goaltender like Schneider or Bernier, and I don’t see that happening, it would be an off-season move.
Now onto the Devils wants and needs.
1. First of all, the Devils would like to add a little more depth to the bottom-six if possible. Due to injuries and lack of performance the Devils haven’t gotten much help in terms of scoring, or anything, aside from David Clarkson. Montreal Canadiens forward Travis Moen and Vinny Prospal from Columbus could be two potential targets.
2. Depending on the asking price and who’s available, I’m sure they’d like to bring in a puck-moving defenseman to help improve their powerplay. It has been less than average for two years now and if they hope to do any damage in the playoffs they need to get their powerplay straightened up. I’m not sure they’ll land anyone to help the cause but I think Marek Zidlicky of the Minnesota Wild and Lubomir Visnovsky of the Anaheim Ducks could be good fits depending on the price.
It’s worth noting that the Devils can add over 12.5 million dollars in salary at the Trade Deadline according to CapGeek.com.
I think that pretty much sums up the Devils wants and needs heading into the Trade Deadline. Their play up until the deadline and the asking prices of the players available will determine what they do; if anything.
Follow me on twitter @ToddCordell