The Devils remain hopeful they’ll be able to sign recent first-round draft pick Pavel Zacha before the August 15 deadline (Aug. 3).
“I’m going to work on it this week. I believe, hopefully, we’ll get it done,” Devils GM Ray Shero said on Monday. “This is all bonus-related with these top players.”
Zacha’s agent, Patrik Stefan, remains optimistic.
“I’m optimistic but it has to be both sides agreeing,” Stefan said. “We’ll talk this week and see where it goes. Hopefully we can get something done and I’m sure New Jersey feels the same way.”
If Zacha does not agree to a deal with the Devils before the deadline, he will not be eligible to play in the NHL until the 2015-16 season.
Zacha, 18, had 16 goals and 18 assists in 37 games this past season for the Ontario Hockey League’s Sarnia.
The Devils have hired Paul Castron as Director of Amateur Scouting.
Castron comes from Columbus where he spent the past 16 seasons and the last nine as Director of Amateur Scouting.
GM Ray Shero said in a statement, “Paul has an outstanding track record of evaluating and developing prospects for more than 20 years. We feel that he has the experience and leadership qualities to help us accomplish our player development goals.”
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RW Dainius Zubrus, who the Devils placed on unconditional waivers on Wednesday with the intention of buying out his contract, says he can still contribute in the NHL (July 30, 2015).
Zubrus cleared waivers at noon on Thursday.
“I feel I can definitely play and I’ll be approaching the rest of the summer like I’m going to be playing,” Zubrus said. “I don’t know how long I’ll have to wait to find a spot that I think works for me and the team, but I’m getting ready to play hockey. That doesn’t change.”
Zubrus, 37, had been a member of the Devils since the 2007-08 season. Last year he appeared in 74 games and scored four goals and recorded six assists.
The Devils and defenseman Adam Larsson agreed to a six-year, $25 million contract, GM Ray Shero announced.
The 22-year-old scored three goals and recorded 21 assists in 64 games with the Devils last year. The average annual value of the contract is $4.167 million.
“We’re going to talk Friday, Saturday and we’ve been trying to work on something longer-term here because we know the (arbitration) cases and we know the (salary) ranges,” Larsson’s agent, J.P. Barry, said earlier this week (July 24).
Larsson will earn $2.5 million this season, $3 million in 2016-17, $4.5 million in 2017-18, $4.85 million in 2018-19, $5.05 million in 2019-20 and $5.1 million in the 2020-21 season.
The New Jersey Devils have named Tom Fitzgerald as their new Assistant General Manager (Devils, July 24).
Fitzgerald, 46, played hockey professionally for 17 years between the NHL and AHL before retiring in 2006. Shortly after his playing career ended he made the shift into the front office joining the Pittsburgh Penguins staff, working under current Devils GM Ray Shero. He also served as a Penguins assistant coach and most recently as their Assistant General Manager before joining the Devils.
“Tom Fitzgerald has extensive experience as both a player and now in hockey operations, having served in several significant roles over the past eight seasons,” said Shero. “He is well-respected throughout the league, and I feel that he is an ideal fit for our team. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank the Pittsburgh Penguins for their cooperation in allowing Tom to join our organization.”
The New Jersey Devils and defenseman Adam Larsson are progressing on a long-term deal (Gold-Smith, July 24).
J.P. Barry, Larsson’s agent, said discussions had briefly stopped due to the news of Lou Amoriello’s departure. He expects to reengage in contract talks this weekend with Devils GM Ray Shero.
“Ray and I have been talking throughout,” Barry said. “We’re going to talk Friday, Saturday and we’ve been trying to work on something longer-term here. Because we know the (arbitration) cases and we know the (salary) ranges. So, if can’t do the long-term deal, we’ll flip over to trying to settle the (arbitration) and I think we’ll be able to do that.”
Larsson, 22, scored three goals and recorded 21 assists in 64 games played with the Devils last season.
Former Devils President Lou Lamoriello, who resigned to become Toronto Maple Leafs GM (July 23), thanked Devils fans for their loyalty and support with a full-page ad in the “Bergen Record” (July 24).
“Since I first joined the New Jersey Devils in 1987 your dedication to the organization motivated me to work my hardest – every day, every week, every year,” Lamoriello wrote. “The nearly three decades I’ve been with the Devils are times I will cherish and never forget.”
Lamoriello’s team won the Stanley Cup in 1995, 2000 and 2003, which he highlighted in his farewell letter. He wrote:
Through all the years, you the fans are an unforgettable part of my New Jersey Devils experience and I am grateful for your passion and unwavering support.
I will miss you and New Jersey. Though now a rival, the New Jersey Devils have a bright future. Of that you can be assured. I thank you again for your commitment to what we worked to achieve every year for the last 28 seasons.