Power Ranking New Jersey Devils Biggest Roster Decisions This Offseason

The New Jersey Devils have a lot on their plate now that Sheldon Keefe has been hired as head coach. What should Tom Fitzgerald prioritize this offseason to upgrade this roster?
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3. Figuring out Jonas Siegenthaler and John Marino

The Devils currently have six, and possibly eight, NHL defensemen currently on the roster. They have the starters in Luke Hughes, Simon Nemec, Dougie Hamilton, John Marino, Kevin Bahl, and Jonas Siegenthaler. They also have Santeri Hatakka, Kurtis MacDermid (who also plays forward), and Seamus Casey all pushing for time. 

Yet, most believe the Devils need to add to the defense. After how bad last year went, most fans would be pretty upset with running it back. We already discussed the issues with the salary cap. The Devils don’t want to add unnecessary depth, and anything more than that costs money. 

The easiest way to make this work is trading either Marino or Siegenthaler. Marino makes $4.4 million and Siegenthaler makes $3.4 million per season. Trading one or the other gives them a little more breathing room.

It’s a huge risk, because if the Devils get Marino and Siegenthaler from 2022-23, then they are exactly what they need. However, if they are what they were last season, then it’s another massive problem. Siegenthaler had a huge issue with positioning in a new defensive scheme. Marino watched 71 goals go against the Devils while he was on the ice, and he missed 11 games. It was a rough year for both, but they could bounce back. Fitzgerald has to figure out what he thinks of them moving forward.