New Team: San Jose Sharks
This one might be obvious to some, but we bet a large contingent of Devils fans completely forgot about the loss of Mackenzie Blackwood. Technically speaking, the Devils also lost Jonathan Bernier who retired this offseason. However, he didn’t play a game last season. Blackwood went into last season as the starter, and he didn’t even make the final roster for the playoffs. He lost his job to Akira Schmid during the last game of the season.
The Devils traded Blackwood to the San Jose Sharks this offseason for a sixth-round pick. It’s honestly a win-win for everyone involved (at least on paper). The Devils were likely going to let Blackwood go for nothing, but they took a late-round pick to send his signing rights to the West Coast. Blackwood gets the change of scenery he desperately needs, and the Sharks either get assistance with the tank or find a gem who can help when the rebuild is over.
The story of Blackwood is a sad one, looking back at it. He was the player who was going to usurp Cory Schneider after his injury woes derailed his career. Blackwood proved it on the ice for two seasons, showing he had what it takes to be the guy in net. Then, injuries and uncertainty ruined him. He quickly became a liability in net, and the Devils needed to move on.
Many Devils fans will still root for Blackwood to succeed. He’s had the tools, but sometimes things don’t work out like their originally scripted.