The playoff performance of Bratt was largely the same as Meier’s. The only difference? Bratt was nonexistent for most of the Devils two series.
Throughout the year, Bratt had his brilliance and very long cold streaks. In November, he would’ve been a safe bet to be the Devils highest-paid player going into next season. Now? Very few people want him to make more money than Jack Hughes’ $8 million a season. While Timo Meier comes off as a team first, “I want to be here” player, Bratt has the fanbase feeling a different way.
Jesper Bratt and his management have been dragging their feet on a long-term deal in New Jersey for years now. One way or another, Bratt will get paid this summer. Money will be left on the table in some form with Jesper Bratt. Should he re-sign, it will likely be less than what he’d get on the open market. If Bratt leaves the Devils, it will be because they didn’t offer him his desired amount.
The evidence points to him wanting what’s in his best interest contract-wise. There is no problem with that. That is a key reason why the Devils front office has to really evaluate his willingness to be a part of the future.
Verdict on Timo and Bratt
Unless all reports about Timo Meier were wrong, he should be a New Jersey Devil for a long time. Jesper Bratt will likely go through every possible move in the offseason but will remain a Devil for $7-7.5 million per year. Should both players be willing to sacrifice a little salary-wise, that money can be made up with future playoff runs. It’ll be very interesting to see how both players handle this big decision, and how much Tom Fitzgerald will be willing to give out.