NEWARK, N.J. — The New Jersey Devils have given executive vice-president/general manager Ray Shero a new multi-year contract despite a disappointing season that saw the team finish with the NHL’s third-worst record.
Managing partner Josh Harris announced the contract on Monday without disclosing length or salary details.
A year after making the playoffs for the first time since reaching the Stanley Cup Finals in 2012, the Devils slumped badly, posting a 31-41-10 mark in an injury-plagued season.
The extension comes months after Harris and Shero extended the contract of coach John Hynes.
“People ask me if I am disappointed with the season,” Harris said. “Of course I am disappointed, we all are. We wished we had finished better, had a better record, but having said that I am incredibly optimistic about the future.”
He said Shero has helped the franchise across the board by improving the scouting system and hiring analytics people and sports scientists. He said Shero is building a winner from the base up.
“Look, there are no shortcuts to the top, only shortcuts to the middle,” Harris said. “We’re going to build this brick by brick and ultimately, we’re going to get where we need to be, which is an elite team competing for the Stanley Cup.”
Shero has been the Devils’ general manager since replacing Lou Lamoriello in May 2015. He said he’s hopeful even after the poor season.
“We are moving forward finally,” Shero said. “It’s hard to say that when you’re third-worst, but it’s just a different feeling to me. It’s OK to be disappointed. I am and I know our fans are, but there’s an optimism I have.”
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Tom Canavan, The Associated Press