Player News - Devils

Date: Team: Pos:

Joseph Blandisi is one of 11 New Jersey Devils who need to be given qualifying offers by Sunday.

The restricted free agents are Blake Coleman, Blake Pietila, Kevin Rooney, Beau Bennett, Stefan Noesen, Jacob Josefson, Ben Thomson,Damon Severson, Mirco Mueller and goalie Scott Wedgewood. Should any not receive qualifying offers, then they would become an unrestricted free agent. Blandisi had three goals and nine points in 27 games with the Devils.
Jun 25 - 9:52 AM

The New Jersey Devils have selected Nikita Popugaev in the fourth round (98th overall) of the 2017 NHL Entry Draft.

Popugaev went on quite the slide, as there were rumblings that he could be a late first-round pick or early second-rounder. Popugaev is a monster. The big winger is listed at 6-foot-6, 217 pounds, which is incredible for an 18-year-old. The young Russian got off to a fantastic start with Moose Jaw of the WHL in 2016-17, as he posted 51 points in just 40 games. However, he ended up being traded to Prince George and saw his offensive output dry up with his new team (18 points in 31 games). Like most players that are his size, he’ll need to continue working on his skating if he’s going to make it as a top-six forward at the NHL level. His head coach with Prince George, Richard Matvichuck, has already stated that his staff will continue to work on Popugaev’s release, too.
Jun 24 - 11:48 AM

The New Jersey Devils selected Jesper Boqvist in the second round (36th overall) of the 2017 NHL Entry Draft.

One day after selecting Nico Hischier first overall, the Devils took another center on day two. Boqvist played across three levels over in Sweden last year, including 16 games with Brynas of the top division. There, the 18-year-old picked up six assists in 16 games, which isn’t terrible for a player of his age. What makes Boqvist an intriguing prospect is his nice combination of speed and puck skills. Those are valuable assets to own in today’s NHL. His overall game still needs some work and he’ll also have to fill out before he makes a dent in the NHL. Boqvist will probably spend at least one more season in Sweden before he heads over to North America.
Jun 24 - 10:29 AM

Nico Hischier is the highest player ever selected from Switzerland at the NHL Entry Draft.

Hischier was chosen first overall by the New Jersey Devils on Friday night. "Honestly, I cannot find the words for that," he said. "I'm just so happy to be part of a great organization. I'm happy for a chance." The Devils like his defensive game as well as his ability to create and finish on offense. Hischier will take part in New Jersey's summer prospect camp in mid-July before participating in training camp.
Jun 24 - 9:02 AM

The New Jersey Devils have selected Nico Hischier with the first overall pick in the 2017 NHL Entry Draft.

Going into the season, Hischier being taken over Nolan Patrick would have been a huge shock. There was a little buzz surrounding Hischier coming into the 2016-17 junior season, but he wasn’t mentioned in the same breath as Patrick until he exploded onto the scene at the 2017 IIHF World Junior Hockey Championship, where he was dynamic for Switzerland. The 18-year-old posted seven points in five games on a mediocre Swiss team. When he was growing up, Hischier’s favorite player was former Red Wings superstar Pavel Datsyuk, and you can certainly see the influence the Russian has had on the youngster. Hischier’s skill level, puck handling ability and vision are all great. In his first season in North America, he put up 38 goals and 86 points in 57 games with the QMJHL’s Halifax Mooseheads. He has the potential to develop into a top point producer at the next level, helping the Devils' ailing offense and potentially eventually playing with Taylor Hall.
Jun 23 - 7:16 PM

Nico Hischier finished No. 1 on TSN's Final 2017 NHL Draft Ranking.

He edged out Nolan Patrick in the end. "I think the big turning point was the [2017] World Junior Championship," said one scout. "As a draft eligible player, he was as dangerous as any player in the tournament and against the toughest competition any prospect faces. That's when the notion of him [passing Patrick] became a consideration." Patrick was No. 1 on TSN's preseason ranking in September; No. 1 on TSN's midseason ranking in early February; and No. 1 on TSN's draft lottery edition ranking in late April. Finnish defender Miro Heiskanen finished No. 3 on TSN's final list, while Cale Makar was No. 4. Gabriel Vilardi rounded out the top five.
Source: TSN.ca
Jun 20 - 8:47 AM

The New Jersey Devils have kept four forwards and four blueliners.

The keepers are Taylor Hall, Adam Henrique, Kyle Palmieri, Travis Zajac, Andy Greene, John Moore, Mirco Mueller, Damon Severson and Cory Schneider. Mike Cammalleri, Stefan Noesen and Jon Merrill were not protected.
Source: TSN.ca
Jun 18 - 11:11 AM

The New Jersey Devils have acquired Mirco Mueller and a fifth-round pick in 2017 from San Jose for a second-round pick in 2017 and a fourth-round pick in 2017.

Had the Sharks not made this trade, there was a chance that they could lose Mueller to Vegas in the expansion draft. "We want to thank Mirco for his years of service to the San Jose Sharks and the San Jose Barracuda organizations," said Sharks GM Doug Wilson. "This will be an excellent opportunity for Mirco to continue his development and with our organization's depth on the blueline, an opportunity for us to acquire assets for the future. We wish him the best." San Jose used the 18th overall pick on Mueller back in 2013, but he's failed to play more than 11 games in a season during his time in the NHL. The 22-year-old had a goal and an assist in four NHL games last season and two goals and 20 points in 62 games in the AHL. Joining the Devils gives him a better opportunity to get regular playing time.
Source: NHL.com
Jun 17 - 3:27 PM

New Jersey is still open to all options, but they are expected to keep the first overall pick in the 2017 NHL Entry Draft.

"I've gotten calls asking if there's interest moving down and other calls where it's been more specific and it's something to think about," GM Ray Shero said. "But I haven't called them back. The idea is we'll probably be picking, but we're open to a lot of things." It's expected that the Devils will choose between Nolan Patrick and Nico Hischier later this month.
Source: NHL.com
Jun 13 - 2:04 PM

Don't be surprised if the Devils make a play for a veteran defenseman over the next few days.

One blueliner that interests New Jersey is the Ducks' Sami Vatanen, who will likely be left unprotected in the upcoming expansion draft. Vatanen is recovering from shoulder surgery and could be out of action untli November. However, the Devils really need an offensive defenseman who can move the puck and run the power play and Vatanen fits the bill. Stay tuned.
Jun 11 - 10:42 AM

The New Jersey Devils could take a defenseman first overall in the 2017 NHL Entry Draft.

According to Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman, the Devils believe their biggest need is on defense. New Jersey owns the first pick in the 2017 draft, but the top two prospects, Nico Hischier and Nolan Patrick, are both forwards. If the Devils are serious about drafting a defenseman that early, they could just take the guy they want with their current pick, or they can trade back, pick up a few more assets, and hope the player they want is still available when they make their pick. Miro Heiskanen and Cale Makar are two of the top defenseman available in this year's draft. A trade with the Vancouver Canucks (they need a center) could make a lot of sense.
Jun 10 - 7:49 PM

Ilya Kovalchuk is reportedly unlikely to end up with the New York Islanders or Rangers.

The Rangers were previously listed as one of the teams gunning for Kovalchuk, but they've reportedly pulled out of the bidding while the Islanders are also apparently not interested. Kovalchuk would need to sign with the New Jersey Devils and then have them trade him to the team of his choosing, so in addition to whatever his salary would be, any team interested in Kovalchuk would also need to provide the Devils with assets to make it worth their while. St. Louis, San Jose, and Toronto have also been previously cited as possible destinations for Kovalchuk.
Jun 9 - 4:07 PM

The Columbus Blue Jackets have reportedly joined the list of teams interested in acquiring Ilya Kovalchuk.

Kovalchuk has spent the last four seasons in the KHL, but he's considering returning to the NHL for the 2017-18 campaign. The thing is that Kovalchuk's only way of getting back in the NHL is by signing with the New Jersey Devils. He was originally signed with the Devils and got out of his contract by retiring and then immediately heading to the KHL, which is why they still control his NHL rights. That being said, the Devils have the option of signing and then immediately trading Kovalchuk, which is a very real possibility. St. Louis, the New York Rangers, Toronto, and San Jose have also been thrown out there as possible destinations for Kovalchuk.
Jun 5 - 2:58 PM

Craig Button of TSN.ca loves the overall game of Nico Hischier, especially his hockey smarts.

Hischier is expected to go either first or second overall in the upcoming NHL draft with Nolan Patrick being his competition for first overall. "A lot of players are smart, but he just flows," said Button, the former Calgary Flames general manager who is now a draft expert at TSN in Canada. "He's like that Formula One driver who knows when to shift up or shift down and how to navigate the corner. He just flows, offensively and defensively. When you go back and watch the tape of him, it's like, wow. He seamlessly moves into the right areas. . . . And his hands are so good. He keeps [opponents] off balance, and with the way he can maneuver his hands, he can open up a passing lane or he can open up a spot around the net." Look for Hischier to go to New Jersey number one or Philadelphia in the second slot.
Jun 5 - 8:32 AM

The New York Post is reporting that more than six teams have been in touch with the New Jersey Devils regarding Ilya Kovalchuk.

Some of the teams that have shown interest are St. Louis, the Rangers, Toronto and San Jose. GM Ray Shero is in a bind because it has become apparent that Kovalchuk, who has spent the last four seasons in the KHL, does not want to play for New Jersey, but the Devils will lose any compensation after the 2017-18 season is completed. In other words, if Kovalchuk decides to play another year in the KHL, he will turn 35 and become an unrestricted free agent. The Devils therefore have to do something this off-season and not lose all rights to the talented winger. Stay tuned.
Source: NY Post
Jun 4 - 8:50 AM


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