Jan 12, 2014; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; New Jersey Devils right wing Reid Boucher (15) warms up before playing against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Air Canada Centre. The Maple Leafs beat the Devils 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

A Few Reasons Why The Reid Boucher Experiment Should End

Dec 4, 2013; Newark, NJ, USA; New Jersey Devils center Reid Boucher (15) skates with the puck towards Montreal Canadiens goalie Peter Budaj (30) during the shootout at the Prudential Center. The Canadiens defeated the Devils 4-3 in a shootout.

When Reid Boucher was initially called up from Albany, I wasn’t too pleased.

While it was exciting to see Boucher play in the NHL after his stunning season in the OHL last year, I had cautious optimism about his success in the NHL. After all, Reid is only 20 years old.

It will be easy to move Reid up and down quite often if the situation allows it due to his waiver exemption for 3 years or 160 games played in the NHL, whatever happens first (In Lou We Trust).

Through 21 games this season with the New Jersey squad he has only registered 2 goals and 4 assists. In 21 games with the Albany Devils, Reid has 10 goals and 9 assists (CapGeek).

What I am implying with the stats is not so much that Reid Boucher is a bust. On the contrary, I think that Reid could be a big catalyst for the future of this team and he needs to grow and develop in Albany before he starts to see consistent playing time in the NHL. He is extremely inexperienced at his age and played in his 1st NHL game this season.

Joe Whitney has been basically “NHL-ready” for a good amount of time now and he still has been in Albany all season. In 37 games with Albany this season, Whitney has 14 goals and 20 assists. Whitney also has a year of waiver exemption according to In Lou We Trust.

Maybe we could see an even switch between Joe Whitney and Reid Boucher if the Devils really are committed to Jacob Josefson and Cam Janssen.

At the very least, Boucher should be sent down before the Olympic Break. If he spends 2 weeks without playing at all, it can easily be viewed as a crushing blow to his improvement when he can be boosting his confidence in Albany.

While yesterday’s hashtag was #Goals4Cory, today’s hashtag is #FreeWhitney. If you want to continue the discussion on Twitter, use these hashtags!

Also, vote in the poll below:

Do you feel that Reid Boucher should be sent down/stay up and/or should Joe Whitney come in his place?

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Tags: Joe Whitney New Jersey Devils Reid Boucher

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