Category Archives: New Jersey Devils
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
Devils winger Zach Parise wouldn’t be able to count his scoring chances during the Stanley Cup finals on his two hands if he wanted to.
Of all the Devils, Parise has felt the sting of running into the wall that is Kings goalie Jonathan Quick the most.
Parise has no points in the finals. He and fellow star Ilya Kovalchuk’s minimal production have stood out in a series that would be much different for the Devils, who are in an unenviable 3-1 hole after winning Game 4, if their two best threats had converted. All they have is an empty-net goal between them.
“We do need to score; that’s our job and that’s our responsibility,” Parise said, repeating a common refrain.
But the lack of production doesn’t negate the type of player Parise is, nor will it affect New Jersey’s desire to re-sign him or
numerous teams to pursue him.
Parise is one of two prized unrestricted free agents this summer, the other being Predators defenseman Ryan Suter.
The clock is not only ticking on the Devils’ season, but on Zach Parise’s career in New Jersey, for when the puck is dropped tonight for Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Finals, it will start the countdown at T-minus-60 on the captain’s impending unrestricted free agency
This all but certainly will be the final summer in which, a) players will be allowed to sign front-loaded contracts with huge signing bonuses that this year will also serve as lockout-protection; and b) players will be permitted to sign contracts without term limits.
Indeed, Parise can expect offers modeled after the nine-year, $60 million contract Brad Richards signed last summer with the Rangers, under which the center is receiving $24 million the first two years, including a $10 million signing bonus last July and an $8 million signing bonus due next month.
Parise, who will turn 28 next month, could attract offers of up to 12 years. He will certainly receive front-loaded, bonus-laden offers from the Rangers and Red Wings, who have millions to spend and the inclination to do so.
The Wild will be in, though Parise might want to think more than twice about going home to join a team in which he would be the best player by leaps and bounds.
The Sharks could be in. The Maple Leafs will be, though current general manager Brian Burke doesn’t believe in front-loaded deals. The Bruins could become a serious contender. There will be others.
Given the financial realities in New Jersey, it’s almost impossible to conjure the scenario in which ownership could cut Parise a $10 million check on July 2. And again, that’s even assuming Parise’s first choice is to remain a Devil.
The Star Leger is reporting that the New Jersey Devils are expected to trade Richard Matvichuk in the near future. Apparently he is not working our very will under Sutter’s style of play and other young players have stepped it up to take his spot.