Devils sign Ondrej Palat
The Devils were the center of speculation in the offseason, with Tom Fitzgerald looking to swing big for a star forward. Matthew Tkachuk, Johnny Gaudreau, or Timo Meier*? Three up, three down. Instead, New Jersey inked long-time Tampa Bay Lightning fixture Ondrej Palat to a five-year, $30m contract ($6m AAV).
Palat is a great player, but handing out $30m to a guy on the wrong side of 30, with a No-Move Clause is just bad business. Palat hasn’t scored 20+ goals since 2013-14 and has just three 50-point seasons to his name (all coming before 2017-18). Compounding the disappointment, Palat finished his first season in New Jersey with just eight goals and 23 points after missing three months due to groin surgery.
Palat was basically only signed for his experience and playoff pedigree, and he will need to show it in a big way, starting with the upcoming series against the New York Rangers.