New Jersey Devils Look to Graduate Prospects In 2023-24

New Jersey Devils defenseman Simon Nemec (5): Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports
New Jersey Devils defenseman Simon Nemec (5): Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports /
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New Jersey Devils
New Jersey Devils left wing Nolan Foote (25): Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports /

Nolan Foote

Nolan Foote is a big-bodied winger who knows how to utilize that size to protect the puck, and utilizes his speed going up the ice. He is a player capable of getting a really quick shot off. That shot is lethal. This makes him a very likely candidate to replace Miles Wood on the fourth line. After having seen Miles Wood slow down more after his hip surgery, his career wouldn’t be the same, and this opened the opportunity for Nolan Foote.

Yes, this is a possible call-up or preseason promotion type of player. Foote is the kind of winger who should play on both the second PK unit, the second power play with his shot, and being a physical puck presence.  He is likely going start out on the bottom six, adding, grit, speed, and energy, making a big impact helping Lindy Ruff roll four lines consistently. Foote can easily be a playoff hockey-type player who can be key in helping the Devils play with that Sasquatch role and showing no mercy in winning board battles.

Chase Stillman

For those of you at home scoffing at this player, we know what you’re probably thinking: “Why is he on this list?” To fill that in, Chase Stillman played in 59 GP with 19 goals, and 48 points last season with the Peterborough Petes. In the CHL playoffs, he scored 4 goals and 13 points in 21 games. The Petes winger played with a lot of snarls in the playoffs and went absolutely nuts in a game showing that not only does he win puck battles, he will destroy his opponents in the playoffs.

The Devils are very fortunate to have this grit and sandpaper type of guy in their prospect pool. This is why you hold onto a player like Chase Stillman because you want to have your gritty, skilled, talented players add more depth. Coach Ruff can dig into his lineup sheet and pencil in a guy like Stillman to bring that purely strong forechecking role that helps win playoff games.

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If everything goes right, he can come off with a similar role to former New Jersey Devils winger David Clarkson. That kind of role would help the Devils go deeper in the playoffs and potentially win a Stanley Cup and play a key spot in the New Jersey Devils depth chart.