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Category: New-Jersey-Devils

Nico Hischier Named Captain Of The New Jersey Devils

via a release from the New Jersey Devils,

The New Jersey Devils today named center Nico Hischier the 12th captain in team history. The announcement was made by Devils’ Executive Vice President/General Manager Tom Fitzgerald, in conjunction with Head Coach Lindy Ruff. 

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Checking In On The Top 2 Draft Picks From Last Year

from Larry Brooks of the New York Post,

It wasn’t so much hype as a sense of anticipation. A year ago, for the first time ever, the first two overall selections in the NHL draft were going to teams based approximately six miles apart, and weren’t we all going to be in for a treat watching the rivalry develop between the Devils’ No. 1, Jack Hughes, and the Rangers’ No. 2, Kaapo Kakko?

Well, the future obviously all lies ahead of the two 19-year-olds, which is a pretty good thing considering their one season of NHL past added up to the biggest combined one-two statistical flop in more than two decades....

And let me tell you, Hughes was dancing all night long at the Garden on Thursday, racking up a pair of goals and an assist in an eye-opening performance to co-star with 47-save goaltender MacKenzie Blackwood in the Devils’ 4-3 victory.

The young man added musculature to his frame with diligent offseason work that has allowed him to battle in those 50-50 areas, but Hughes just never stopped moving his feet. He was dynamic and quicksilver, on his toes throughout while thriving under head coach Lindy Ruff, who worked as an assistant the previous three years on the other side of the Hudson.

“My confidence level is obviously high,” said Hughes, who has six points (2-4) through three contests. “I think it’s always been high, you know, but we’re building and I’m building personally.

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Corey Crawford Retires

TORONTO (Jan. 9, 2021)  Corey Crawford has officially announced his retirement from the National Hockey League (NHL) today following 10 NHL seasons and 488 regular-season games.

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Corey Crawford On Leave Of Absence From The New Jersey Devils

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A Bigger Jack Hughes

from Sean Farrell of NorthJersey.com,

Jack Hughes was on a mission to become a bigger and stronger player than the one that was pushed around as a skinny teenager. In order to do so, that meant eating five or six meals a day.

So after getting back to Michigan, the Devils center loaded up on a diet full of chicken, steak, protein shakes and rice.

"I put on probably 14 pounds of pure muscle since March," Hughes said. "This summer, I treated eating like a job."

The former No. 1 overall pick has arrived at Training Camp with a new physique and a sense of confidence after a bumpy rookie season. The 2021 NHL season starts Jan. 14 for the Devils.

Part of that belief comes from new coach Lindy Ruff, whose up-tempo style should complement his game of speed and skill. Hughes also feels better equipped after training with his brother Quinn, a Calder Trophy finalist with the Vancouver Canucks last season.

Maybe it's a blessing in disguise that Hughes had something to prove during the longest offseason of his career.

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Corey Crawford Lands In New Jersey

added 11:02pm, NJ release is below.

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The New Jersey Devils Plan To Be Very Competitive

from Randy Miller of NJ.com,

So when can this rebuilding end and lead into perennial playoff berths, and then possibly runs at a fourth Stanley Cup?

“It’s such a difficult question,” Blitzer (team partner) answered. “Here’s the reality: We think that the core of our team is obviously very exciting for a very long period of time. At the same time, there’s going to be some very different dynamics here in the coming season and future seasons obviously from what’s going on from the global pandemic standpoint.”

Translation: The Devils could be one of the teams that benefits from the cap staying at $81.5 million next season instead of increasing to the $84-million/$88 million range. This coronavirus-induced development figures to be really bad news for cap-strapped powerhouse clubs like the Tampa Bay Lighting and St. Louis Blues, but it has the Devils sitting pretty with about $26.2 million to add to next season’s cap, according to Cap Friendly.

Will the Devils go shopping for premium free agents and/or deal high draft picks for lineup upgrades to try speeding up their climb in the Eastern Conference standings? Possibly, but Blitzer suggested the Devils will start adding big pieces once the young ones take a few more giant leaps forward in their developing.

“The reality is we’ve got that great core,” Blitzer said. “We have pieces coming in. We have moves obviously that we would intend to make over the summer, meaning in addition to what we have today. And I’d like to think that we will be a very competitive team on the ice next year as we continue to grow and build.

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Lindy Ruff Announced As The Head Coach Of The New Jersey Devils

from the New Jersey Devils,

Executive Vice President/General Manager Tom Fitzgerald:

"We are proud and excited to have Lindy Ruff join our organization as Head Coach. He is one of the most successful and respected coaches in the NHL, not only today, but in League history. His personality, experience, knowledge, work-ethic and focus will provide a calm presence in our locker room. He is the right coach at the right time for our organization. Lindy has a proven track record of getting the absolute best out of his players across the board- stars, role players and everyone in between. His teaching ability, and communication skills will be well-suited for our team, especially our young, developing players. Throughout his career, his teams have been greater than the sum of their parts. I look forward to working together with Lindy as the organization moves forward."

Head Coach Lindy Ruff:

"I am excited to get back in the lead chair and guide the future of this team. This is a fantastic opportunity to lead a group of great young talent and strong leadership to the next level." said Ruff. "Tom and I will sit down together and build a plan for the coaching staff and I will start to get to work on familiarizing myself with the players and staff. I look forward to bringing this core together, developing our players and putting us on a trajectory that can lead to sustained success in a timely manner. It's an exciting time to be a part of the Devils' organization, and I have the desire and fire to get us on the road towards the Stanley Cup Playoffs and beyond."

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  Tags: lindy+ruff

Multiple Reports State Lindy Ruff Will Be Named Head Coach Of The New Jersey Devils

from Randy Miller of NJ.com,

Devils players campaigned for status quo while management took its time deciding what to do about its interim general manager and head coach.

After almost four months of debating, the Devils are going for a big-name head coach by hiring Rangers assistant coach Lindy Ruff over Alain Nasreddine while opting to keep Tom Fitzgerald as GM, Kevin Weekes of the NHL Network reported Wednesday.

continued

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Jack Hughes Plans To Get Stronger

from Randy Miller of NJ.com,

“I knew I had to get stronger,” Hughes said Thursday in a media Zoom call from his home in suburban Detroit.

The next words that came out of Hughes’ mouth was a vow that was made with conviction:

“I will get stronger over the years.”

Hughes is listed at 5-10, 168 pounds. He probably won’t get taller, but he still some filling out to do. That, more than anything, is what he’ll be working on during the Devils’ very long offseason, which began in March and could last until January due to the coronavirus stoppage.

His weight-gain plan is simple.

Big meals.

Lots of meals.

“Obviously, I’m trying to eat a lot, gain weight that way,” Hughes said.

It’ll take more than loading up on pasta and milkshakes to turn added pounds to muscle though, and Hughes will not be taking shortcuts pumping iron in the weight room.

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About Kukla's Korner Hockey

Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com

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