New Jersey Devils Begin Minor Rebuild With Shero & Hynes


On Tuesday afternoon, the future of the New Jersey Devils was unveiled to the media, fans and hockey world. GM Ray Shero officially introduced John Hynes as the next Head Coach of the New Jersey Devils. Hiring Hynes and Shero’s comments during the press conference provided us with information we’ve been craving since Shero was named GM. The first major thing we now know is that this is no longer a period of “transformation” for the New Jersey Devils, it is a rebuild.

I want us to be three things: Fast, Attacking & Supportive – Devils GM Ray Shero

This quote from Ray Shero stuck with me the most from this press conference. He began by speaking about wanting the team to be fast, attacking and supportive, but added that there’s no shortcuts to achieving this. He added that these three things ultimately “add up to the team which is the most important thing”. While some fans may not agree, in my option this sounds like a minor rebuild.

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Before everyone riots after seeing me use the “R” word, just hear me out for a second. Essentially the defense has been most rebuilt assuming that players like

Bryce Salvador


Peter Harrold


Mark Fraser

do not return. They have a solid young core of defensemen with a lot of potential and great goaltenders behind them. I said this is a minor rebuild because the New Jersey Devils need to overhaul their forwards. Players such as

Dainius Zubrus


Tuomo Ruutu


Ryane Clowe

are deadweight and need to go.

Assuming the New Jersey Devils do not trade their 1st round pick this year, they will likely have Reid Boucher, Stefan Matteau and other young forwards looking to become mainstays in the next 1-3 years. With this year’s free agency class being very weak, there’s no way the New Jersey Devils can be transitioning. They need to get younger at forward and they need more consistency. With out free agency help, they must rely on the draft and trades to get better.

Luckily for the New Jersey Devils they have a good amount of young defensemen of which they can use in a trade to bring in help. They also have a good amount of cap space so they should be able to make a deal with a cap strapped team this off-season. I almost never quote our own twitter account, but I think this is important for fans to realize. We have become so wrapped up in the organization’s prior success that we forgot where they came from. Things weren’t always so great and teams go through rebuild periods sometimes, it’s a simple fact of professional sports.

The New Jersey Devils are not tanking and they are not going to rebuild for a long time, but yes the team does need to rebuild its forwards. There’s no way of knowing how long it will take, but I’d say 1-3 years is a good estimation. Fans should not be mad or upset with the direction the team is going, they should be celebrating it. Its been too long that the New Jersey Devils have just been patching the holes in the lineups with band-aids (aka veteran rentals). This move gives the fans and organization more certainty. Things may get rough, but things are finally being done the right way to ensure longstanding future success for the New Jersey Devils.

Next: John Hynes Named Head Coach Of The Devils