Jan 28, 2014; St. Louis, MO, USA; New Jersey Devils defenseman Bryce Salvador (24) works the puck away from St. Louis Blues right wing T.J. Oshie (74) during the second period at Scottrade Center. Mandatory Credit: Scott Rovak-USA TODAY Sports

Can Bryce Salvador Salvage His NJ Devils Career?

We all knew Bryce Salvador would come up eventually.

I’m sure you heard that Bryce Salvador’s contract expires after this season. At a ripe age of 38, the signs seem to point that Salvador has a very slim-to-none chance of returning for the 2015-16 season. Bryce turned a few heads in his contract year when the New Jersey Devils went on their Stanley Cup Finals run. Scoring 14 points in 24 games is pretty impressive for a defenseman.

The real question here is can Salvador salvage his image as a New Jersey Devil.

The unfortunate truth is that Salvador has 6 points since the Devils lost in Los Angeles in Game 6. In 2012-13, he posted 2 assists and a horrific -12 rating in 39 games. Last season, he was hampered with more injuries and only played in 40 games and had 1 goal, 3 assists, and a -2 rating. The 10th Captain in New Jersey Devils history is basically past the “skating on thin ice” phase and he is trying to just make it out alive.

This question just simply cannot be, “Will Bryce Salvador be re-signed?” The answer is already obvious: No. The real question here is can Salvador salvage his image as a New Jersey Devil.

As a Devil, Bryce Salvador only had to sign 2 contracts that spanned 7 seasons. Before the 2008-09 season, he signed a 4-year, $11.6 million contraction that took him up to Game 6 in Los Angeles. From there, his impressive play gave him a new 3-year, $9.5 million contract that has now taken him to his final season (most likely) in the black and red. Salvador received the Captaincy once Zach Parise returned home to Minnesota after Game 6. Once the lockout was finally finished, Bryce’s captaincy could begin.

It was a rocky one at best. Extremely poor defensive play has plagued the veteran and a lack of offensive production has sent Bryce Salvador on a downward spiral. This season will likely be Bryce’s last chance to leave his impression as a Devil and try to salvage any bad reputation to his name and especially his captaincy.

All Bryce Salvador can do this season is prove to everyone why he was chosen as Captain. He wants to prove that it wasn’t only about leadership, but also his play as well.

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