Kevin Bahl’s offensive numbers are nothing big, but the team doesn’t need them to be. He really came into his own this past season, especially near the end when he was played next to Dougie Hamilton in the playoffs. He is big with a massive wingspan and moves well on the ice. He’s not even into his prime at only 22 years old. Next season, he continues to solidify himself as an NHLer quietly while most people pay attention to the young offensive Devils defensemen. His style will allow the others to thrive much like a guy like Jonas Siegenthaler did for this roster.
Prediction: 2 years $1 million AAV
The fall from grace for Mackenzie Blackwood has been in a spiral for years now. It is time for his Devils career to sail off into the sunset. There is nothing to even discuss on this. The guy has been struggling not to be the worst goalie in the NHL for a while now, and it would be insane for a team to look at him as a helpful addition.
Contract: Let him walk
This would all amount to $29.825 million of the Devils’ current 34.282 million in cap space giving them room to add a 7th defender or whatever else they want at the deadline. It is also worth noting that after this season they will need to re-up Dawson Mercer and Akira Schmid, so having some room for that without needing to make space is the smart way to go about it. This team on paper looks like a legit contender. The rookies must pan out on the back end though, so this is not without risk.