The 2013-14 New Jersey Devils: How The Team Was Built

When the New Jersey Devils were winning Stanley Cups, their foundation was built with smart and deep draft picks, coupled with shrewd trades.  Ah but how was the current edition of this Devils roster built?  Also, find out how the Devils may have actually salvaged something from the Ilya Kovalchuk deal.  Plus, how Jason Arnott played a role in the Devils acquisition of Marek Zidlicky.

Devils Draft Picks

  • Reid Boucher – 2011, 4th round (#99 overall).  Broke the Junior goal record of Steven Stamkos.  Excelled early with Albany in the AHL, got a cup of coffee and showed some flashes with New Jersey.

    (Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports)
    Reid Boucher.  (Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports)
  • Martin Brodeur – 1990, 1st round (#20 overall).  The Calgary Flames took Trevor Kidd.  The Devils would take Brodeur over Felix Potvin, who later went to the Toronto Maple Leafs.  Almost 700 victories, 124 shutouts, 3 Stanley Cups and a Hall of Fame career later, I’d say New Jersey made the correct choice.

    Martin Brodeur
    Martin Brodeur. (Brad Barr-US PRESSWIRE)
  • Patrik Elias – 1994, 2nd round (#51 overall).  Franchise leader with 382 goals, 575 assists, 957 points, 262 even strength goals, 105 power play goals and 78 game winning goals.  Elias has also helped the Devils win 2 Stanley Cups.  Only Daniel Alfredsson has more goals from that draft class.  Elias is right on the borderline for Hall of Fame consideration.

    Patrik Elias
    Patrik Elias.  (Ed Mulholland-US PRESSWIRE)
  • Mark Fayne – 2005, 5th round (#155 overall).  A solid, consistent, sturdy defenceman since entering the league in 2010.
  • Eric Gelinas – 2009, 2nd round (#54 overall).  A big defenceman with a wicked shot.  Already has as many goals (6), assists (16) and points (22) in 40 NHL games this season, as he had in 57 games with Albany in the AHL in 2012-13.

    Gelinas Devils
    Eric Gelinas. (Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports)
  • Adam Henrique – 2008, 3rd round (#82 overall).  The 2011-12 Calder Trophy finalist, notched two playoff series winning goals that season, vanquishing the Florida Panthers and New York Rangers.

    (Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports)
    Adam Henrique.  (Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports)
  • Cam Janssen – 2002, 4th round (#117 overall).  Has accumulated 304 penalty minutes in a Devils uniform.
  • Jacob Josefson – 2009, 1st round (#20 overall).  Still trying to stay healthy and find a role at the NHL level.

    (Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports)
    Jacob Josefson.  (Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports)
  • Adam Larsson – 2011, 1st round (#4 overall).  Still a young defenceman and polishing his game.  Should still be on par to be a franchise cornerstone if he’s given a fair shot and consistent minutes.

    Adam Larsson (Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports)
    Adam Larsson. (Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports)
  • Jon Merrill – 2010, 2nd round (#38 overall).  In the aforementioned Kovalchuk trade with the Atlanta Thrashers, New Jersey also received a 2nd round draft choice and used it on Merrill.  Not a bad consolation prize.  While still young and raw and in his rookie campaign, Merrill has a solid build for a lengthy NHL career.
  • Mattias Tedenby – 2008, 1st round (#24 overall).  Up and down the Albany shuttle, Tedenby needs to find his niche or risk being a quadruple-a player.

    Mattias Tedenby
    Mattias Tedenby.  (Ed Mulholland-US PRESSWIRE)
  • Travis Zajac – 2004, 1st round (#20 overall).  Aside from one season, has been an iron man for the Devils.  Netted seven goals, including two game winners, during the Devils run to the Stanley Cup Final in 2011-12.

    (Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports)
    Travis Zajac.  (Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports)

Free Agent Signings

  • Steve Bernier – Played for Head Coach Pete DeBoer on the Panthers.  Signed an AHL contract with Albany in 2011, paid his dues and signed an NHL contract with New Jersey in 2012.  An important grinder on the Devils fourth line.

    (Jayne Kamin-Oncea-US PRESSWIRE)
    Steve Bernier.  (Jayne Kamin-Oncea-US PRESSWIRE)
  • Damien Brunner – Signed from the Detroit Red Wings, late in summer free agency, in September of 2013.  Still finding his legs in New Jersey.

    From fantasy fire to a healthy scratch...Damien Brunner is a victim of the fantasy reaper. (Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports)
    Damien Brunner. (Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports)
  • Ryan Carter – Another DeBoer player from Florida.  New Jersey acquired Carter off waivers in 2011.  Like Bernier, a gritty fourth liner for the Devils.
  • Ryane Clowe – Signed in July of 2013 from the Rangers.  Clowe got off to a slow and injury plagued start but seems to be getting more and more comfortable with his surroundings in New Jersey.
  • Stephen Gionta –  With his brother Brian already having helped the Devils win their third Stanley Cup, New Jersey signed the younger Gionta, out of Boston College in 2006.  After paying his dues at AHL Albany, Lowell and Albany again, Gionta parlayed a solid 2011-12 postseason into a regular spot on the Devils fourth line.

    Stephen Gionta Devils
    Stephen Gionta.  (Ed Mulholland-US PRESSWIRE)
  • Andy Greene – Another nugget unearthed as a free agent in 2006, Greene has been the most consistent Devils blue liner since the 2013 campaign.  Greene already has a career high seven goals this season.

    (Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-US PRESSWIRE)
    Andy Greene.  (Kirby Lee/Image of Sport-US PRESSWIRE)
  • Peter Harrold –  Signed as a free agent from the Los Angeles Kings in August of 2011, Harrold has provided depth on the blue line and is the ultimate team player, even chipping in at forward.
  • Jaromir Jagr – Signed from the Boston Bruins in July of 2013.  Jagr has lived up to and blown past expectations, leading the Devils with 16 goals, 24 assists and 40 points.

    (Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports)
    Jaromir Jagr.  (Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports)
  • Michael Ryder – Signed from the Dallas Stars in July of 2013.  Ryder is tied for the team lead in goals with 16.

    Michael Ryder Devils
    Michael Ryder. (Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports)
  • Mike Sislo – Signed as a free agent out of New Hampshire in 2011.  Paid his dues at AHL Albany, posting double digits in goals and got a taste of NHL action with New Jersey this season.

    Mike Sislo of the Albany Devils
    Mike Sislo of the Albany Devils. (James DiBianco/Flickr)
  • Anton Volchenkov – Signed from the Ottawa Senators in July of 2010.  Volchenkov has been a consistent stay at home defenceman this season for New Jersey.
    Anton Volchenkov (Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports)
    Anton Volchenkov. (Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports)


  • Joe Whitney – Signed as a free agent out of Boston College in 2011.  Has led AHL Albany in scoring in each of the past two seasons.  Earned first call-up with New Jersey this season.
  • Dainius Zubrus –  Signed from the Buffalo Sabres in July of 2007.  Zubrus has been a solid role player for the Devils.

    (Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports)
    Dainius Zubrus.  (Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports)


  • Andrei Loktionov – Acquired from the Kings on February 6, 2013, for 5th round pick in the 2013 draft, which was later traded to Florida and subsequently flipped to Buffalo, who selected Gustav Possler.  Loktionov is still aiming for consistency in New Jersey.

    (Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports)
    Andrei Loktionov.  (Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports)
  • Bryce Salvador –  Acquired from the St. Louis Blues on February 26, 2008, for Cam Janssen.  Salvador presently serves as Devils Captain and notched 14 points in 24 games, during New Jersey’s run to the Stanley Cup Final in 2011-12.

    (Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports)
    Captain Bryce Salvador at Yankee Stadium.  (Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports)
  • Cory Schneider – Acquired from the Vancouver Canucks on June 30, 2013, at the NHL Draft, for New Jersey’s 1st round pick in the 2013 draft, which the Canucks turned into Bo Horvat.  While his record may not show it, Schneider boasts a microscopic goals against average of 1.88 and has turned in three shutouts on the campaign.

    (Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports)
    Cory Schneider.  (Ed Mulholland-USA TODAY Sports)
  • Tim Sestito –  Acquired from the Edmonton Oilers on July 9, 2009, for future considerations.  Sestito always plays hard and has been a leader for the AHL Devils as well.
  • Marek Zidlicky –  Acquired from the Minnesota Wild on February 24, 2012 for Kurtis Foster, Nick Palmieri, Stephane Veileux and a Washington Capitals 2nd round pick in 2012, along with a conditional pick in 2013.  That second round pick from the Caps was obtained when the Devils sent Jason Arnott to Washington in 2012, for that draft choice and David Steckel.  A huge risk/reward offensive defenceman, Zidlicky is paying dividends for the Devils, posting eight goals and 19 assists this season.  That also includes eleven points on the power play.

    (Jim O'Connor-US PRESSWIRE)
    Marek Zidlicky.  (Jim O’Connor-US PRESSWIRE)