Category Archives: New Jersey Devils
The Devils are entering an offseason of uncertainty.
With so many unrestricted free agents, it will be difficult to find the money and cap space to keep key players like Patrik Elias and David Clarkson.
Here are the Devils’ potential free agents:
Player Status What happens?
Devils right winger David Clarkson loves coming home to Toronto.
“This is my favorite place to play,” he said of the town in which he grew up as a Maple Leafs fan.
But will Clarkson, who can become an unrestricted free agent after this season, think about signing with the Leafs to play in his hometown? He gets asked that a lot around here.
Even before the Devils hit a rut and began to falter over the last half-dozen games, general manager Lou Lamoriello was formulating a plan for what the team needs to become a serious Stanley Cup contender post-Parise.
If Team Canada comes calling, Martin Brodeur will listen. Despite the fact he’ll be 41 years-old-during the 2014 Olympics in Sochi, Russia, Brodeur said today that he’s interested if he’s welcome there.
Initially, after playing in his fourth Olympics for Canada in 2010, Brodeur assumed it would be his last one. But with the Olympics only a year away and with him still playing, there is a renewed interest on his part.
Brodeur said that “a lot of people” have been talking to him about the topic lately.
<p>The New Jersey Devils have acquired Andrei Loktionov from the Los Angeles Kings for a fifth-round choice in the 2013 NHL Draft, the Devils announced Wednesday. Loktionov was a fifth-round pick by the Kings in the 2008 draft. He has seven goals and 14 points in 59 career NHL games, including 39 during the 2011-12 season. He appeared in two Stanley Cup Playoff games for the Los Angeles Kings during their march to last season\\\’s championship. This season, Loktionov has played only for the Manchester Monarchs of the American Hockey League, with seven goals and 22 points in 37 games.</p>
The New Jersey Devils have acquired Andrei Loktionov from the Los Angeles Kings for a fifth-round choice in the 2013 NHL Draft, the Devils announced Wednesday. Loktionov was a fifth-round pick by the Kings in the 2008 draft. He has seven goals and 14 points in 59 career NHL games, including 39 during the 2011-12 season. He appeared in two Stanley Cup Playoff games for the Los Angeles Kings during their march to last season\’s championship. This season, Loktionov has played only for the Manchester Monarchs of the American Hockey League, with seven goals and 22 points in 37 games.
The Devils were interested in bringing Scott Gomez back after the Montreal Canadiens bought out his contract. However, Gomez thought it would be better to play on the West Coast and signed with the San Jose Sharks.
There was also some interest in unrestricted free agent Petr Sykora, who ultimately signed with SC Bern in the Swiss League. Sykora would be eligible to sign with an NHL club when Bern’s season is over and prior to the April 3 NHL trade deadline, but he’d have to go through waivers.
It’s possible Lamoriello waits to see how his team plays early in the season before making a move. Having extra defensemen in reserve over the course of a contracted schedule of 48 games after a four-month lockout certainly can’t hurt in case one or two are injured.
But with only 48 games, it can get late pretty early if the team struggles to score goals and gets off to a slow start.
Defense is clearly an area of depth for the Devils now, though, and moving forward. They have Alex Urbom and Eric Gelinas waiting on their AHL team in Albany for an opening on the NHL club and 2010 second-round pick Jon Merrill, probably their best prospect on defense, might be ready to leave the University of Michigan after this season.
Ilya Kovalcuk expresses desire to stay in Russia, but says it will be hard to break contract with Devils
While his Devils teammates are expecting him to return from Russia at some point soon for the start of the lockout-shortened NHL season, star left wing Ilya Kovalchuk continued to let them twist in the wind after playing in another game in the Kontinental Hockey League.
After notching an assist Thursday in SKA St. Petersburg’s 4-2 win over Salavat Yulaev in Ufa, Russia, Kovalchuk expressed a desire to remain in the KHL for the remainder of the season, but also acknowledged his commitment to the Devils.
“I want to stay in St. Petersburg, but I have contractual obligations in the NHL, which will be hard to break,” Kovalchuk told Sport-Express in Russia, according to the sports daily’s U.S. correspondent, Slava Malamud.
— AlessandroSerenRosso (@AlexSerenRosso) January 8, 2013
Meanwhile, Parise is expected to decide today where he’ll spend his next dozen-or-so seasons. His agent told The Post the Devils remain among a “small, select group” of teams still in the Parise Derby.
Parise is believed set to receive some $100 million for 8-13 years. The financially-troubled Devils remain in contention despite their financial troubles, and the difficulty they may have matching two $12 million signing bonuses.
The Flyers, Red Wings, Wild and Penguins are believed to be among the “small, select group,” of remaining Parise suitors. Devils GM Lou Lamoriello negotiated long and hard with Parise Saturday night and yesterday, making what was called “a competitive offer.”
Besides the financial considerations, Parise is believed to put primary weight on his evaluation of a team’s chances of winning a Stanley Cup. The Devils’ financial plight itself weighs against them, since it suggests that the team might have trouble adding more stars.
Other Devils unrestricteds, Bryce Salvador, Petr Sykora and Johan Hedberg, remained unsigned into last night, while Alexei Ponikarovsky went to Winnipeg.
Brodeur personally negotiated with Lamoriello before turning to free agency, and sources suggest the Devils’ initial offer was well below Brodeur’s salary of $5.2 million last season, and may have helped prompt his decision to test the open market.
Zach Parise could be riding shotgun with Sidney Crosby for the next decade.
The Pittsburgh Penguins are expected to offer Parise, the best forward available in free agency by a landslide, a 10-year contract between $75 million and $80 million, according to Josh Yohe of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.
The offer, according to the Tribune-Review’s Rob Rossi, would not be heavily front-loaded and short on bonuses. Long-term, front-loaded deals—like the 12-year, $104.4 million one Crosby agreed upon earlier this week—may be outlawed in the next collective bargaining agreement.
Parise, 27, has scored at least 30 goals in five of his last six seasons with the New Jersey Devils, the exception being 2010-11, when a knee injury limited him to 13 games. The Penguins have emerged as one of his top potential suitors in the last few weeks—they have the necessary cap space, and Crosby and Parise have been friends for years.
Like all long-term deals, Parise’s contract would be a risk and likely would cause problems for the Penguins down the road. It would also cement Pittsburgh at the top of the Eastern Conference for Parise, Crosby and Evgeni Malkin’s respective primes.
Meanwhile, Parise will spend July 1 at his agents’ office in Ontario fielding calls, offers and visitors, according to multiple reports. Devils GM Lou Lamoriello was scheduled to meet Parise on Saturday for the last time before the market opens at 1 p.m. Sunday, according to TSN.ca’s Bob McKenzie.
New Jersey Devils veteran goaltender Martin Brodeur could be wearing a new uniform when the puck is dropped for the 2012-2013 season.
Brodeur, an unrestricted free agent on Sunday, has hired player agent Pat Brisson to represent him and might be ready to test his value on the open market.
The 40-year-old netminder has had limited conversation with the Devils on a new deal and though he could still re-sign with the only NHL team he’s played for, his new agent says he will entertain offers from other teams if an agreement is not reached at the beginning of the free agent period.
“He will be testing free agency if a deal is not in place by Sunday,” Brisson told TSN on Friday.
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Parise not tipping hand as free agency nears
The Devils captain, scheduled to become the most coveted commodity of this summer’s free-agent crop on July 1, broke his season-long silence on his pending unrestricted free agency Wednesday. He said he would not consider crossing lines in the heated Hudson River rivalry.
Instead, Parise insisted he has never imagined himself wearing a sweater other than that of the Devils, the team he led to the Stanley Cup Finals this spring in his seventh NHL season.
“I’ve said all along, I’ve loved playing here,” Parise said. “I’ve always appreciated everything that this organization’s done for me. My feelings have never changed.”
Several teams, including his home state Minnesota Wild, are expected to bid for Parise’s services once he hits the market, but when asked if he could ever see himself playing in a Rangers jersey, the 27-year-old laughed nervously and said: “No.”
When asked again about signing with the Blueshirts, he said no three times.
Parise’s agent did not return calls, but such comments are not exactly the way to attract a high-spender such as the Rangers to the bidding war.
If the Blueshirts do not pursue Parise, they would likely have to make a trade to acquire their stated need of a star scorer.
Most notably, Blue Jackets captain and top-line winger Rick Nash remains on the trading block
Zach Parise declined to discuss his future on Monday night after the New Jersey Devils’ season came to an end with a Game 6 loss to the Los Angeles Kings in the Stanley Cup Finals, but the expectation remains that the Minnesota Wild will make a very strong push to sign the unrestricted free agent.
Former North Stars president and general manager Lou Nanne confirmed as much on Tuesday during his weekly appearance on “Reusse and Mackey” on 1500 ESPN. Nanne said that after talking to Wild owner Craig Leipold last week he believes, “the Wild are going to throw the kitchen sink” at the winger in order to land him.
Nanne said he thinks the fact the financially strapped Devils lost in the Cup finals make it less likely that Parise will stick with that organization. Parise has spent his seven-year NHL career with New Jersey and served as the team’s captain.
“I was under the belief that he would have to win the Cup to come to Minnesota until I talked to Craig Leipold last week,” Nanne said. “I’ve gotta tell you, the Wild are going to throw the kitchen sink at him. I think there’s a good chance he ends up in Minnesota, because I don’t see anybody in the National Hockey League willing to give as much to Parise as the Wild are going to be willing to give. So I would not be surprised if Zach Parise came home.”
Nanne went on to say that the Wild will pursue Parise and Nashville defenseman Ryan Suter, who also will be a free agent on July 1.
“They’re going to do everything in their power to get them,” Nanne said. “And I would not be surprised if they got them. I wouldn’t be surprised if they didn’t get them. But I have to tell you, if they don’t get them it’s going to be confusing to me — especially Parise, because I really believe the Wild will pay more than anybody else for him.”
The Red Wings, Rangers and Penguins also have been mentioned as potential landing spots for Parise, whose father J.P. played with the North Stars.
Up next for the Los Angeles Kings: First, a parade. Then, the pursuit of free agent Zach Parise come July 1.
These Kings have no intention of winning just one Stanley Cup. They want more. And they are not in any kind of salary cap conundrum, the way past winners have found themselves . They won’t have to dish off quality players – or any players really – the way the Chicago Blackhawks did after winning two years ago.
And while they won’t say so because they can’t legally say so, the captain of the New Jersey Devils is No. 1 on their off-season shopping list.
They want Parise, as do many teams, and they want him badly.
Parise fits perfectly into the Kings’ ultra-competitive philosophy, led by general manager Dean Lombardi and his able assistant, Ron Hextall. What they determined on their way to the Stanley Cup was what so many have known already. But until you witness it up close, experience it with your players – that fine line between success and failure often comes down to little more than effort.
And it’s not just effort. It’s a willingness to compete at a level beyond the norm. That willingness, when combined with superb goaltending by Jonathan Quick, terrific team altering leadership from coach Darryl Sutter, and all-world play from defenceman Drew Doughty, is why the Kings came out of the eighth seed and won 16 playoff games, losing just four, and now have an entire summer to celebrate.
In the post-game hysteria, Hextall, who was once the ultimate competitor himself, approached defenceman Rob Scuderi in the all the noise and spray of the Kings dressing room. He saw Scuderi, with a broken nose, a cut on his lip, a cut on his chin, is face looking like a work of abstract art, all from the game and series changing hit by Steve Bernier of the Devils and had to tell him rather loudly. “You’re the reason why we won the Stanley Cup.”
Zach Parise interrupted the question as soon as he heard the words “future” and “now that it’s over.”
He is 18 days from becoming the biggest free agent in the NHL, but in the aftermath of the Devils’ 6-1 season-ending loss to the Kings Monday night, he wasn’t about to address it.
“I’m not going to talk about that,” the Devils captain said. “I’m not going to talk about that.”
But his future Hall of Fame teammate — another free agent — said Monday night that the team needed to move quickly to lock up their captain before he ended up in another uniform.
“I think Zach is a big thing that the organization has to take care of first, there’s no doubt about that,” Martin Brodeur said.
“They need to try to lock him in and lure him into staying.
“He’s a franchise player. He’s a guy fans love, and as a captain, he’s a great leader. He did a great job in his first year as a captain to bring a team that was counted out early in the season to what we almost accomplished. It was pretty impressive.”
Will the Devils be able to keep him? The only thing they know for sure is that they’ll have plenty of competition. Detroit, Pittsburgh, Minnesota, and yes, the hated Rangers, are all believed to be in the market for the perennial 30-goal scorer.
Maybe the Devils don’t need to board a plane for their flight to Los Angeles. Maybe the Devils can simply ride Air Brodeur across the country for tomorrow night’s Game 6 against the Kings.
They are only halfway home, have done only half of the heavy lifting necessary before they can do the lifting every single one of them lives and strives for, the lifting of the 34.5-pound chalice, but if the Devils are only halfway home now, that is somewhere noteworthy when only five days ago they were going nowhere fast.
“It’s a different kind of thing to get yourself ready for this kind of game, two in a row,” Martin Brodeur said after yet another throwback performance in his team’s 2-1 Game 5 victory at the Rock that makes tomorrow night necessary. “It drains you and takes a lot out of you, but it’s worth it.
“They [the Kings] have been so close, I’m sure it’s getting to them a little bit, all the chances to end it.”
Two chances down and two chances to go for the Kings, who carried the play most of the way, yet were thwarted for the second time in the four nights by Brodeur, whose own team mustered just four shots in the first period and three in the third.
There is history in the making here; history that can be made by the team with the pedigree, the team with the all-time goaltender who has reached all the way back perhaps even to 17 years ago when he won his first of three Stanley Cups as a 23-year-old.
“I wish I was that eloquent so I could phrase it for you [for what Marty means to us],” said coach Pete DeBoer, who has maintained equanimity throughout this tournament. “His performance speaks for itself. The timing of it with us 10-1 in Games 4-through-7 in our series is a testament to how he enjoys the pressure.”
Brodeur faced only 25 shots, but it was the timing of the saves, just the way it’s always been throughout a career during which he spent the first 11 years playing behind the Hall of Fame Great Scotts on defense — Stevens and Niedermayer.
Read more: http://www.nypost.com/p/sports/devils/they_re_halfway_to_making_history_tpFH7EBVBx8XGiWWreYbjN#ixzz1xRmXC2A3