It’s no secret that the New Jersey Devils are having a poor season. In fact, the word “poor” isn’t negative enough to describe their current situation. The appropriate Internet term to describe this team is “EPIC FAIL.”
This sort of disaster wasn’t predicted. The Devils were the talk of the NHL over the offseason, signing Kovalchuk to a 400 year 15 year contract and brought in tough defenseman Anton Volchenkov to strengthen their defense. Most people predicted that they would finish near the top of the NHL and be a threat to contend for the Atlantic Division title once again.
Things haven’t quite worked out that way. Rather than taking their flashy new acquisition, Ilya Kovalchuk, out for an impressive spin in his first full season with the team, the Devils have driven their car off of a cliff. Backwards. Twice. Into a pit of spikes.
After 12 games, the Devils only have seven points and they are sitting at the bottom of the league. Their 3-8-1 record defines horrible and they’ve allowed 19 goals more than they’ve scored, worse than any other NHL team.
So what can fix the Devils? Lou Lamoriello is not a very conventional general manager, so the solution will not be a conventional one. Solving the New Jersey Devils’ problems will take the kind of off the wall ideas that we specialize in here. So here we go! Lou, you can thank us later.
Convince the NHL to void Kovalchuk’s contract again
When the NHL voided the 17-year contract Ilya Kovalchuk signed during the summer, the New Jersey Devils were quite upset. They shouldn’t have been. Having Kovalchuk on their team has put the Devils in some serious cap problems… for the next 15 years. This is especially true because Kovalchuk only has three goals and three assists in 11 games. The Devils would be wise to sit down with the league and beg them to reject the deal once more. In fact, while they’re at it, maybe they can talk the league into voiding Brian Rolston’s contract as well.
Try and get four-on-four overtime rules extended to cover the entire game
The New Jersey Devils got into some trouble earlier this season when they dressed only 15 skaters for a game against the Pittsburgh Penguins. The solution to this problem would be to lobby for the entire game to be played four-on-four. That would allow them to cut at least four players from their roster and give them some salary cap relief. If they can get three-on-three instead, it would be even better for them. They could also lobby to have some teams removed from the league. If they could get five teams removed, they’d now be in 25th place instead of 30th.
Put a list of Martin Brodeur’s records in net in place of the actual Brodeur
Marty Brodeur is one of the greatest goaltenders in NHL history. However, this has been far from his finest year. He’s 3-7-1 on the season with a 2.78 GAA and a .905 save percentage. In recent years he’s struggled in the playoffs as well, but with the way the Devils are playing they don’t have to worry about that for a long while.
Brodeur holds almost every goaltending record and could probably fill several books with his accomplishments. It’s time to place those books in the net in place of Brodeur. It would be much more difficult to score on a stack of books than on Marty these days and somewhat less expensive.
Give the players some vitamins, nutrients and duct tape
The Devils have definitely had injury problems thus far. Anton Volchenkov has only played two games due to a neck injury and a broken nose. Brian Rolston has only played two games as well and is currently recovering from sports hernia surgery. Zach Parise has recently come down with a lower body injury. Clearly these players are not being fed or taken care of in any manner. Perhaps reinforcing their bones with duct tape would help.
Actually… having players like Rolston out with long-term injuries is actually helping the Devils’ cap situation. Lou is truly a genius… he’s hurting people to save money! In that case, he should invest in a hitman to take care of a few other problems with the team.
Let Jay-Z buy the team
Rapper Jay-Z is part owner of the New Jersey Nets basketball team. They’re currently 2-1 on the season. Despite being only three games in, the Devils are already envious of the Nets’ winning record. Perhaps allowing Jay-Z to buy the team would help the Devils. Sure, they’d likely end up moving to Brooklyn, but maybe they’d sell out a few more games there. Besides, who seriously wants to play in Newark?
If the deal with Jay-Z fails, the Devils should consider moving back to Kansas City. They have a whole arena just sitting there waiting.
Rather than retiring Scott Niedermayer’s number, bring back Scott Niedermayer
Scott may not want to come back, but the Devils can use the retirement ceremony to trick him. After all, The Devils are very experienced in trapping.
For these ceremonies, the honoured player typically puts on his old jersey and stands on the ice as his number is raised. This time, the Devils could convince Niedermayer to wear his full equipment for the event. Once he’s on the ice, it will probably take him a moment to realize that the teams are warming up and that there’s no banner with his name and number in sight. Then drop the puck. He’ll have no choice but to play for free. Win.
Just line up along the blue line and prevent anyone from entering the zone, killing all offense in the game
Hey, it worked before.