My Defense of the New Jersey Devils

Every time someone on this forum suggests contraction, or moving, the Devils are usually mentioned. Yes, they arent at the top of the league in attendance. But they are not last either. Yeah, they lost money, but so did 19 other teams.

its almost like everyone wants the Devils out…itll be the same players and maybe the same coach…as long as “Defense still wins championships,” the Devils/NewName will play defense…even if they are in winnipeg, or somewhere else in Canada or the US

but heres what you probably dont know: the Devils WILL be getting a new arena, if you say its going to be located in “the hood” of Newark, youre just ignorant, it will be more accessible to MASS TRANSIT, and probably provide more entertainment than the swamp does for fans and will provide more revenue for the team

(from my experience, plenty of Rangers fans in New Jersey take the train to see Rangers games, why wouldnt Devils fans do it?)

the Devils just signed a monster TV deal with Fox Sports New York. the deal, which is for 20 years, will net the Devils well over $10million a season(which is more than they got last year, and I have also heard it is close to the Islanders TV deal which is around $13million a season)

Scott Stevens will retire soon, i hate to say, so thats 7million dollars saved(take away a couple for the man that “replaces” him on the roster)…who knows if Neidermayer actually wants to stay in New Jersey(i have heard the rumors of Vancouver being a place hed play)…and that would be 14million(save a few for the man that “replaces” him on the roster)

the new CBA will take away SOME of the Devils current salary, whatever the number turns out to be, i cannot say. the Devils also have a lot of players under contract as of “now” so they might lose them to free agency under the next CBA or to retirement or via trade

im sick and tired of people saying the Devils should leave. usually the only reason is “poor fan base.” but there is NO MASS TRANSIT to the Swamp, ticket prices are incredibly high for this area(+highest property taxes, auto insurance), and the Swamp is boooooooooooooooooooorrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrriiiiiiiiing, theres nothing to do.

maybe the CBA will allow for a drop in ticket prices(especially if replacements are used before the union rejoins) and that could kickstart a rise in attendance…yes, the chances of this happening are slim to none, but the NHL cant survive for 2 years w/o hockey.

the new arena in Newark should provide the Devils with more fans based on those who would arrive via Mass Transit, it might also be a fun place to go to as well. the new CBA should provide financial stability to a team that is getting a new arena AND has a nice cable contract. the Devils high salary as of now will be drastically different after the new CBA is completed.

so now you know some reasons why the Devils shouldnt be going anywhere. and maybe you wont be so quick to jump to conclusions.

I do not agree with contraction. but dont be so damn quick to say the Devils should go, or ANY team for that matter, until you know something about it.

29 Responses to My Defense of the New Jersey Devils

  1. 19Yzerman says:

    Will it still be exit 16W to get to the Devils home ice Arena. Every now and then ESPN shows me something interesting about hockey. They pointed out that to get continental arena one could take exit 16W to go to your Cup Finals and that it takes 16W’s to win the CUP.

    That is one Gigantic market. Which has displayed its multitude of fan allegiance from NYI to NYR and NJD, Jets and Giant share the meadow lands, Mets and Yankees “THE EVIL EMPIRE” share NYC?Oh yea Nicks and Nets.

    Fan attendence is the concern that needs to addressed. However in todays state of economics it is a concern for every team in the league. Just some more than others.

  2. cgolding says:

    it remains to be seen how much of an impact the new arena will have on Devs attendance. the argument now, which you articulated, is that the Swamp is a crappy arena, with poor pricing, poor location, etc… so in theory, many of their problems could be fixed by getting the new arena.

    the issue is, what if the arena isn’t the problem with devils attendance?

    the flyers own south jersey, and you have the Rangers and NYI fans that live in the north from prior to the Devs being there. how many new fans have been born into the Devs culture rather than the NY teams? i have a close friend who is that way, he’s a Devs fan, while his dad is a Rangers fan. how many are there really though? if the issue is more that the are still has a lot of the other team’s fans, then the new arena isn’t going to solve their problems.

    personally i think they will be fine with the new arena, and the coming of age fan-base in the area. it is hard for new teams to do well, especially in a market with an established fan base for other teams, when the fans that they do have tend to be younger and not have the income yet to spend on the team.

    10 years from now, we’ll see how they are doing.

    newark is a slum-hole man, may be better for transportation… but not a place you want to get lost on the way home.

    nevermind the bullox,


  3. habsoverserver says:

    Only teams committed to wide open hockey will be permitted in the new NHL. The Devils, whose first Cup run destroyed the idea that winning hockey has to be entertaining, must change or be banished.

    I suggest that from now on, any game where the Devils take less than 30 shots or allow less than 20 shots will be automatically counted as a loss. If hockey does not become entertaining the sport will die.

  4. RangerSteve says:

    Newark is not that great of an area, but keep in mind the Devils’ new arena was NOT going to be put into the worst part of Newark. The new arena apparently was to be put into the business district area of the city, which is not a bad area at all to walk in.

  5. LeafyMcLeaf says:

    Oh ya great idea. To make more money dump all your best players. That’ll really raise attendance too. Personally if I were to contract back to 20 teams the following would be no more:





    Tampa Bay

    Carolina (In the 02 playoffs more leaf fans went went to those games then Canes fans)




    Maybe I am forgetting a team to possibley save the Sabers or Lightning. Maybe get rid of LA and move the Lightning some where. The Devils I think might do well in Seattle. Some one mentioned a while ago that they should give the American North West a chance.

  6. Beckfan5 says:

    You forgot Nashville, Columbus and Anaheim.

    Id leave Dallas, Buffalo and Washingon.

  7. LeafyMcLeaf says:

    Pretty sure anaheim is up there. But yeah. I wouldn’t cut Columbus, my cousin is a Blue Jacket. He was the future considerations in the Grant Marshall deal.

  8. Beckfan5 says:

    So. If hes that good then he can play else where. Theres no need for a team in Columbus.

    Besides, I bet most hockey fans dont even know what state Columbus is in.

  9. cgolding says:

    Dallas is one of the strongest US franchises… they ain’t going anywhere.

  10. rojoke says:

    Maybe it’s because I hate the topics on contraction and I don’t really read them thoroughly. But I don’t remember ever seeing the Devils mentioned in a contraction article, on this site, other sites, or even the mainstream media. Whenever I see a contraction article that lists specified teams, it’s every expansion team since 1994 except Minnesota; Carolina, Pittsburgh, and Phoenix.

    I just think it’s a stupid issue because it’s not going to happen anyway. If the NHL does lose teams, it will be because they can’t survive in the market place, not because the league will actively seek to fold them.

  11. NjDEVSFN says:

    i never said contraction/moving of the Devils has been mentioned by the media…but by FANS on this site

    yes, Newark isnt great, and I wouldnt want to get lost there either, but thats why I take the train!

    i never said the Devils will “dump players,” Scott Stevens is 40, and who knows whats gonna happen the next time he gets nailed…and Neidermeyers “contract” is only 1 yr

    the Devils usually outshoot their opponents, maybe its boring because their defense in their own zone is just extremely good and your team cant get shots in?

    the 1995 Devils were basically the 1993-94 devils that scored 306 goals…even WITH that offense, they couldnt get to the finals, so they adjusted…and it worked, they gave offense a try

    oh, and the Devils scored 5 goals in Games 3 and 4 in the Finals(yay Defense!)

    a new arena isnt the only issue thatll help the Devils, ticket prices HAVE to be lowered and a transportation-to-arena has to be fixed(i would be just as happy with a new arena at the Meadowlands)

    i’m just a Devils fan that is sick and tired of having his team insulted by idiots; but now i gave those idiots some information so they can have an informed opinion

  12. LeafyMcLeaf says:

    Ya, I only know because my cuz plays there….. well he plays on the AHL team, w/e. Doesn’t matter really I’ve never even met him, I just use relation for bragging rights when kids in my class trace their ancestors back a thousand years to find they are connected to royalty. I only have to trace from Toronto to Detroit. But to all who don’t know it’s Ohio.

  13. dkball7 says:

    Well said.

    It wouldn’t be exit 16W, it would be something else.

  14. dkball7 says:

    You would be VERY suprised to see how many kids around my age and younger (teenage kids) who are Devils fans. The team is beginning to take root with the younger generation of fans who couldn’t help but pay attention to the teams great run of success. These kids will soon be season ticket craving adults and will generate plenty of revenue to keep the team in NJ.

    Also, don’t underestimate the amount of devs fans in Long Island (where I live). There are a couple thousand Devils fans who come to watch the Devs play the Isles at the Mausoleum 3 times a year… mass transit to a new arena will help these fans (including myself) get to games much easier than it is now (driving through the city at rush hour… yuck).

  15. dkball7 says:

    HAHA the habs started the trap in the 70’s buddy and are one of the most notorious trap playing teams in all of hockey today!

    Banish teams for playing a defensive style?

    Oh lets go to shoot outs now because they are exiting oooo look lets make the puck nice and bouncy cause its really fun to look at. Give me a break buddy.

  16. dkball7 says:

    Seattle + Vancouver = No good

  17. dkball7 says:

    The Devils led the league in goals in 2000-2001 with 295 goals. People were saying they were boring even then.

  18. habsoverserver says:

    Yes, it is time to banish teams for playing a defensive style. For $!20 a ticket they better figure out how to put a puck in the net.

    It’s hard to say the Habs were playing a trap when their top line wings were averaging 50 goals a season during the 70’s. They won with speed.

    Hockey has gone from being a skill game of end to end rushes to being the least entertaining game on ice.

    The trap is the reason why the NHL has no TV contract in the US.

  19. habsoverserver says:

    Only a Leafs fans would eliminate every team (except NJ) to have made the finals from the East over the last 10 years. Is that how you plan to win the Cup?

  20. NjDEVSFN says:

    the Devils have speed(Neidermeyer especially) and the other team gets through the neutral zone all the time, its not my fault if the Devils play good defense in their own zone

    the trap didnt kill hockey or interest in hockey, interest was peaking around the time when the Rangers won the cup…then what happened? oh, LOCKOUT

    and since that lockout, the Kings have reached the 2nd round once, the Rangers have missed the playoffs 7 straight seasons, and the Blackhawks…

    to say the trap ruined hockey is wrong, but BAD teams in BIG markets did, especially in terms of TV ratings/contracts

  21. habsoverserver says:

    Goal scoring is down by 100 goals per season per team since Devils won their first cup.

    Bad teams can still draw, if they score.

    Niedermeyer (ie not ei) has never scored more than 14 goals in a season and has gone over 50 points only twice in 12 season.s Where is he going with all that speed? I think he is a great player but there is something wrong with the NHL if he can’t get 20 goals.

  22. dkball7 says:

    LOL I didn’t even notice that!

  23. rojoke says:

    Maybe it’s because I hate the topics on contraction and I don’t really read them thoroughly. But I don’t remember ever seeing the Devils mentioned in a contraction article, on this site, other sites, or even the mainstream media. Whenever I see a contraction article that lists specified teams, it’s every expansion team since 1994 except Minnesota; Carolina, Pittsburgh, and Phoenix.

    I just think it’s a stupid issue because it’s not going to happen anyway. If the NHL does lose teams, it will be because they can’t survive in the market place, not because the league will actively seek to fold them.

  24. habsoverserver says:

    The entire league has been boring for the past 10 years.

  25. NjDEVSFN says:

    never said it was mentioned in an article on a website or in the mainstream media but by FANS on THIS site

    i have seen it more than once, which is why im defending them

  26. TheCoach says:

    The problem with the Devils, is that they, along with Detroit and Colorado, have been the most succesful during the past 10 years. NJ has won 3 cups, they have the best goalie in the NHL, along with the top defenseman, but still can’t draw 16,000 fans.

    So if winning and star power don’t sell, what else is there? Maybe a new arena, but a new arena would not solidify hockey in NJ for a long time. There would be a honeymoon period of about 5 years, where people go just to see the arena, but after that, the Devils could very well be in the same situation.

    While I do think that many other teams are better candidates for contraction than the Devils, but there definately is a problem. Maybe 3 teams for that are is too much. Who knows. But I don’t think anyone should deny the fact that something is wrong.

    2 years ago, when the Devils were playing Ottawa in the Conference Finals, CBC Ottawa went down to see what the excitement level was in NJ. In Ottawa, every single car had a flag, stores painted their windows in Sens colours, people put up lawn signs, and their was a giant buzz in the city. You couldn’t go anywhere without talking about the Sens. However, in New Jersey, there was a portion of people who were excited, but there was also a very big portion of people who didn’t care. The CBC went down to a ballfield near the arena, and people there were more interested to talk about baseball than they were the Devils.

    While I’m not for contracting the Devils, because I think they are an A-Class organization, but there certainly are big problems regarding fan attendance.

  27. NjDEVSFN says:

    you wonder why only a “small portion” of people didnt care? you realize that the majority of NJ is transplanted New Yorkers and Mexicans? the mexicans dont care, unless they like/heard of Scott Gomez, and New Yorkers dont care unless they never liked the Rangers…the percentage of Devils fans in NJ is small and widespread…

    baseball in the area is split between Yankees Fans and Yankee haters(aka Mets fans)

    the Devils dont have the “star power” when compared to the Rangers for 2 reasons

    1) the Devils stars are defensive, if Stevens could score goals like Jagr did, the Devils would be fine

    2) the Rangers are terrible, so hockey coverage in the area(considering the media is NYC based) is awful

    a lot of Devils fans are YOUNG, you go to a game, you see tons of moms and dads with young kids…these kids cant go to weekday games unless its winter or spring break. Lamoriello has tried to get the league to put more Devils games on weekends

    certain markets could care less when games are(Detroit, Colorado, Philly, and the canadian teams), but those teams who do well on weekends(like the Devils) should have more games on weekends

    if the Devils rivalry games get 17000+ on a weds night, put a non-rivalry game on a weekend and get around the same number

    there are many reasons why the Devils have an attendance problem

  28. GilaMonster says:

    am i the only one here who has to defend the kings. they are not one of the teams that should be contracted. they have lost a ton of money but then again who hasnt. if im correct in the 2002-2003 they were 10th in attendance. this is a year in which they missed the playoffs and this past season they sold out like half their games and never had less than 17,000. and these are fans that are not supposed to care according to some people. i can honestly tell you it is one of the loudest arenas in the league. i almost went deaf at a kings game against the friggin blackhawks

  29. NjDEVSFN says:

    the NHL cant survive in the United States if you take out a huge market like LA

    the Blackhawks, Kings, and Rangers…along with the other Original 6 arent going anywhere. other US teams that will never move are Philadelphia and Minnesota

    having 3 teams in the NYC area is good if they all made the playoffs at ONE TIME(last time was 1994, ironically the last time the NHL seemed headed in the right direction!)

    if my memory serves my correctly, LA made the playoffs as did Chicago

    5 teams in the US 3 biggest markets…we havent seen it since….and the NHL hasnt been the same…coincidence?

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