Miles Wood is a restricted free agent at the end of the season, and the Devils sorely missed him after he injured his hip in the preseason. He missed months after surgery, and it left the Devils with a huge hole in the lineup. He has puck instincts the Devils miss, as only Jack Hughes and Jesper Bratt has his takeaway ability and nobody on the team has his edge. He’s already gotten under everyone’s skin in the two games since he’s been back (although the Bruins game is one we’d rather not talk about).
Wood hasn’t lost a step, which was important to show during this last stretch of the season. He needs to show his offensive skill is still there, but without the edge he’s shown it’s just another guy.
Wood is looking to earn a long-term contract. There are some complications, as the Devils could be looking at a new head coach next season. Will this one be as patient with Wood as others? He’s playing much better now than he did in previous seasons, but can he do it no matter what system he’s playing in?
Basically, we’re wondering if Wood is a product of his system. It seems unlikely since Wood has had one good season under Ruff and one under John Hynes. He needs to show that he can be a consistent offensive threat and the money will come.