As per a report by Scott Burnside of The Athletic, a source has revealed that the New Jersey Devils are “unequivocally” willing to move defenseman P.K. Subban in a trade before this year’s NHL Trade Deadline. Burnside said he spoke recently to a person familiar with the Devils’ organization who noted that the team is open to moving any parts that were not in a small group of young core players the franchise is intending to build around.
Because Subban does not possess trade protection, the hardest part about any deal for the Devils is finding a team to take his monstrous $9 million cap hit for this season and next. Burnside wonders if the Bruins could be a fit there.
Boston lost Torey Krug and Zdeno Chara and head coach Bruce Cassidy has juggled his blue line ever since. Those departures, along with other injuries opened a big hole on the Bruins left side (key to note here is that Subban plays the right side) and the scribe wonders if Boston could acquire Subban and then expose him in the expansion draft. It would be a gamble, but he notes that having “a player with a big personality and Subban’s skill set might be an attractive add for the first-year Kraken.”
Subban Not Part of the Devils Long-Term Future
Whether he goes to Boston, winds up in Seattle or plays with another team, it sounds like Subban is not destined to remain with the Devils. Fitzgerald made it clear when he took over that he wanted players that could mature along with centerpieces Nico Hischier, Jack Hughes, Mackenzie Blackwood and Ty Smith. Subban really doesn’t fit the mold.
Not only that, but Fitzgerald inherited Subban. He did not draft or trade for him. There’s no loyalty there and if he can sell the positive qualities of the defenseman to another club and move some of that money off his team’s books (he’ll need to retain some salary), it’s best for the Devils to try.
The Devils might have to take back an expiring contract, but Burnside thinks New Jersey could get a package of mid-range picks and/or prospects as well as shed the future cap hit.
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