With two big trades on Sunday, the New Jersey Devils potentially raised a lot more questions than they did provide answers.
The one thing everyone knows now is that the Devils are serious about a rebuild. Moving out their captain and veteran defenseman Andy Greene shows they’re moving in a new direction. Then, sending out talented an underpaid winger Blake Coleman showed almost anyone and everyone is in play.
When GM Tom Fitzgerald spoke to NHL.com about the deals he very much left the door open to more being on its way. “There are a lot of teams kicking the tires to see where we’re at,” Fitzgerald said. He added, “I’m guessing my phone will ring a little more now after what I did today.”
Fitzgerald has one mandate while he’s the GM of the team. That is, he’s looking to move the organization forward around a few key players. Everyone else is available if he can surround those key players with pieces just like them.
We’re thinking big picture and thinking down the road. With [Hischier and Hughes] down the middle, the future is bright. Building a team around that age demographic is important, but we’re going to need some men too, because it’s a man’s league.”
Fitzgerald Didn’t Just Affect the Devils
These two deals and any deals that follow don’t just affect New Jersey. In fact, after the moves he made Sunday, there are likely a lot of GM’s asking questions about what it’s now going to cost to land their preferred targets.
Fitzgerald may have just set the trade market when he moved both Green and Coleman. Greene fetched a second-round pick in the 2021 NHL Draft and defenseman prospect David Quenneville. Coleman saw the Devils get forward prospect Nolan Foote and a first-round pick in the 2020 or 2021 NHL Draft. That’s a pretty good haul, even if you question the move to send Coleman packing.
What does that mean Chris Kreider will cost? What about Jean-Gabriel Pageau? Heck, even the Montreal Canadiens have to know now that Ilya Kovalchuk should fetch a second-rounder. Would the Coyotes now rethink their plan to keep Taylor Hall?
These two Devils’ deals suggest things are about to get interesting.
Related: Winnipeg Jets News & Rumors: Beaulieu, Little, Sbisa, Chibisov, Kulikov & Appleton
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