New Jersey Devils Trade Targets: Who Could Be This Summer's Tyler Toffoli?

The New Jersey Devils added a 30-goal scorer in Tyler Toffoli last summer. It didn't work out. However, the process by Tom Fitzgerald was the right one and he should look to do the same this summer and add another top-six forward to the team.
St Louis Blues v New Jersey Devils
St Louis Blues v New Jersey Devils / Bruce Bennett/GettyImages
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Pavel Buchnevich - St. Louis Blues

Oh, how sweet it would be to have a former Ranger help the Devils win a Stanley Cup. That's the type of impact Pavel Buchnevich would have on this team. He fits the mold of big, strong, and tough to play against, which Fitzgerald will be targeting this summer.

Buchnevich exploded after being traded from the Rangers, having 76, 67, and 63 points over the last three years after having a previous career high of just 48 points. Buchnevich is akin to the Devils Timo Meier in that when they're at their best, they play downhill and physically while also scoring for all areas of the ice.

The 29-year-old also has something Fitzgerald covets: center/winger versatility. The Devils have deployed Erik Haula in the type of role next to Jack Hughes, but adding a player like Buchnevich would provide a much greater upgrade over Haula. It would also kill two birds with one stone as it allows Haula to go back to 3C, another top need for the Devils.

Buchnevich is on an expiring deal with a cap hit of just $5.8 million. A cap hit that will certainly be increasing on his next contract. It's also of note that his name was floated around, turning the Trade Deadline, with the caveat that it would take a massive deal for Blues GM Doug Armstrong to move him.

However, the Blues are in a bit of a rebuild/retool on the fly, and they may not want to commit big term and big money to him. Meanwhile, the Devils could view Buchnevich as the perfect forward to complete their top-six and give them the chance to essentially have Timo Meier and Timo Meier-lite out on the ice for most of the game. It would be a big swing, but his size and style of play could be exactly what the Devils are missing.