The New Jersey Devils fans still need to pay attention to the playoffs.
The New Jersey Devils are not going to be on the ice when the NHL returns to play. They were only a few points out of being the 12th seed. At this point, there is no reason to bring up this game or that game when it comes to just missing the postseason. It isn’t fun that we aren’t going to see our team for a while, but there are still plenty of reasons to keep up with the playoffs.
The first reason is the fact that the Stanley Cup Playoffs are awesome no matter what. Every year there are incredible matchups and storylines to keep fans entertained for months. The play on the ice is always the best of the best once the playoffs roll around and hockey fans should always be watching.
There are also a few matchups here that will directly impact the future of the Devils depending on the result. There is a lot of draft capital on the line for the Devils as a result of these playoffs. Some of them will be pushed off to 2021 if things don’t go their way but the 2020 draft is so deep that we should be rooting for as many picks to come our way this year.
It is easy for Devils fans to root against the New York Rangers. They are the bitter rival that nobody likes. It is even easier to root against them when a potential draft pick could come to the Devils if they were defeated by the Carolina Hurricanes. The pick would be coming as a result of the trade between the Devils and Hurricanes that sent Sami Vatanen off to Carolina. The way that it will all work is very complex, but this tweet uses Elliotte Friedman’s reporting to explain which pick, if any, the Devils will get.
The Devils could also have a couple of 1st-round picks coming as well. If the Arizona Coyotes don’t win the lottery to take the spot of the placeholder, the Devils will get their 1st rounder this year. If they do, they will be getting Arizona’s 1st rounder in 2021. The Coyotes are playing the Nashville Predators, so Devils fans should probably root for the Predators and hope that the Yotes don’t win the lottery. This is all a result of the Taylor Hall trade from back in December.
Last offseason, the Tampa Bay Lightning sent J.T. Miller to that Vancouver Canucks for a 1st-round pick. Tampa then flipped that pick to the Devils for Blake Coleman. It was a fantastic deal for the Devils, but the conditions of the pick from the Vancouver-Tampa trade still apply. If Vancouver loses their series to the Minnesota Wild, they keep their pick. If they defeat the Wild, it is the Devils pick.
It isn’t fun to not have the Devils here, but it is what it is at this point. At least we have a chance to watch the 2019-20 season come to a close. It is also nice that we have plenty to root for here, especially in the early going. There are the draft picks to root for, former Devils players to watch, and lots of great players that are just exciting to see. This is going to be fun.