For the second consecutive season, the New Jersey Devils are looking at the trade deadline as the climax of their campaign. The team’s 2019-2020 season has been less than stellar on all fronts, to say the least. This has led the organization to urgently trading their former face-of-the-franchise, Taylor Hall and axing former head coach John Hynes. Both were out of town well before the half-way point of the season.
The icing on the cake was when former general manager Ray Shero and the team “parted ways” just hours before the Devils hosted the Tampa Bay Lightning on Jan. 12. Looking towards the future, the 2020 NHL Trade Deadline looms on Feb. 24. The Devils’ ownership group has clearly shown that they are ready to make changes. At the same time, managing partner Josh Harris was adamant that the team is looking to win games now when he introduced Tom Fitzgerald as interim general manager.
So, what gives? Can the team as assembled, plus some offseason tweaks, be competitive as early as next season? Here are five reasons why the Devils should stand pat at the trade deadline and look forward to building a playoff contender next season.