New Jersey Devils Off-Season: Should The Devils Use An Offer Sheet?


The NHL released the financial summer calendar which includes the draft pick compensation for restricted free agents related to annual average value. With new GM Ray Shero wanting the team to get younger and hasn’t ruled out using draft picks to improve the team I’m going to look at three pending RFAs and see what it might take to bring an established NHL forward to the New Jersey Devils.

Offer sheet compensation is as follows

[table id=14 /]

With the new compensation announced it has never looked more tempting for a team to offer a top young player on a low entry-level salary or bridge deal an offer sheet. With the compensation for a potential $3.65m cap hit being just a 2nd round pick.

The New Jersey Devils currently own all of their 2016 draft picks.

ALEX GALCHENYUK – 2014/15 cap hit $925k

Alex Galchenyuk is a restricted free agent heading into this summer and is locked in contract negotiations with the Montreal Canadiens. As is the case in such negotiations Galchenyuk didn’t get the glowing praises of his General Manager Marc Bergevin at the Canadiens end of season press conference. The New Jersey Devils need a forward in the same ilk of the American center. To make a realistic approach you have to look at Galchenyuk’s Montreal team-mate Brendan Gallagher. Gallagher signed a contract extension mid-season that kicks in July 1st that will see him earn $22.5m over six years or a $3.75m cap hit. Alex Galchenyuk is younger, more talented, scores more and in total has way more upside than Gallagher. It looks as if the New Jersey Devils would have to risk parting with 2016’s 1st and 3rd round draft picks to send an offer sheet Galchenyuk’s way and I believe he’s worth losing those two picks. 

More from Pucks and Pitchforks

MARCUS JOHANSSON – 2014/15 cap hit $2m

Marcus Johansson has averaged over a point every other game in each of the last four seasons and was a handful of points shy of making that five seasons in his rookie 2010-11 season. Seemingly overshadowed in Washington by Alex Ovechkin, Nicklas Backstrom and Evgeny Kuznetsov the Swede taken 24th in the 2009 draft has a lot to offer. He has great hands with 125 of his 186 NHL points coming on assists. He has the ability to create something the New Jersey Devils have had difficulty creating recently, scoring chances. He’s strong on the puck and has good speed.

The Capitals should have about $19.2m cap space with 9 players heading for RFA or UFA status including Joel Ward, Curtis Glencross, Eric Fehr, Evgeny Kuznetsov, Mike Green and one guy you can guarantee takes a large pay-day Braden Holtby. Washington would be in a tough spot should a team put in an offer sheet for Johansson. They could easily match an offer in the second round draft pick range. However, if the New Jersey Devils were to offer a contract in the $4m range it that could hamstring the Capitals.

NAZEM KADRI – 2014/15 cap hit $2.9m

The player making the most of the three, Nazem Kadri has been one of the shining lights on the Maple Leafs over the last few seasons, with 143 points starting in 2013. With Toronto in a position to rebuild with their “scorched earth” approach there’s been plenty of talk about James van Riemsdyk and Phil Kessel but Kadri could be the cheapest to acquire. It would have to be via the offer sheet route as you wouldn’t lose any players in the process. Kadri would bring speed and skill that is needed in New Jersey, but he is primarily a center. He can play wing, but as a natural center he would be a 3rd choice for me. Toronto will more than likely match any offer sheet as they want to keep hold of Kadri. He is also too similar to Adam Henrique to make him worth the money that it would take to get him away from Toronto. Henrique is great but we don’t need another. What we need are players to compliment the New Jersey Devils centers.

Next: Patrik Elias: Is This His Final Year In New Jersey?