GM Reveals Targets, Price of Devils No. 10 Pick in Trade Talks

The New Jersey Devils will move the No. 10 pick if the price is right.

Getty The New Jersey Devils will move the No. 10 pick if the price is right.

The New Jersey Devils, via General Manager Tom Fitzgerald, are open for business and have made their No. 10 pick in the 2024 draft available in trade offers.

Talking to Pierre LeBrun of The Athletic at the NHL combine on June 4, Fitzgerald told the insider that he’s “willing to move the pick” if the Devils get “the right asset” in return.

“Yeah, for sure,” Fitzgerald said when asked if he’d trade the No. 10 pick. “I’m more than willing to move the pick for the right asset. One that we control, one that’s probably in the same demographic as our team—maybe not 23, 24 years old but somebody we control for a few years.”

To avoid falling for tampering, Fitzgerald didn’t mention any particular player while speaking to LeBrun. That being said, it’s clear what the Devils are chasing ahead of next season: a starting goaltender.

LeBrun quoted “league sources” informing him about the Devils’ interest in two individual goalies.

“While Fitzgerald wouldn’t get into names, other league sources said he continues to show interest in Jacob Markstrom from the Calgary Flames, whom he tried hard to acquire before the March 8 trade deadline, as well as Linus Ullmark from the Boston Bruins,” LeBrun reported on June 5. “There are other possibilities, too, but those two names would top New Jersey’s list.”

Devils Actively Trying to Move No. 10 Pick for a Goalie

Fitzgerald acknowledged the challenges of acquiring a high-caliber goalie. However, he didn’t hide his active pursuit of a starter via trade during the offseason, starting by exploring the market in the combine held in Buffalo.

“It’s talking to the market and getting the pulse of where people are at with their goaltenders and what they want to do,” he said. “When you have good goaltending, it’s tough to let go, and it’s tough to pry out of people.”

Although the Devils “have other roster needs,” as LeBrun reported in his story, their priority is to acquire a new goalie. That happening, or rather when it happens, might “depend on the sequence of events this offseason.”

The Devils already rebuilt their net before the March 8 trade deadline.

New Jersey sent Vitek Vanecek to the San Jose Sharks in exchange for Kaapo Kahkonen. Then Fitzgerald completed another trade acquiring veteran Jake Allen from the Montreal Canadiens.

Devils Interested in Jakob Markstrom and Linus Ullmark

Neither of their two trade-deadline acquisitions for the goaltender position is considered the long-term starter in New Jersey’s net. Thus, the priority (acquiring a bonafide no. 1 goalie) remains the same entering the offseason.

“My understanding is that Markstrom would waive his full no-move clause to go to New Jersey,” LeBrun reported on June 5, citing a league source.

The Devils tried to trade for Markstrom before the trade deadline but his current team, the Calgary Flames, didn’t accept to retain any salary.

New Jersey submitted a second offer without the salary-retention requirement but the Flames rejected it again, as LeBrun reported on March 1.

Markstrom has started 425 of 435 games since becoming a bonafide starter in the 2015-16 season while playing for the Vancouver Canucks.

In the 2024 campaign, Markstrom started 48 regular-season games stopping 90.5 percent of the shots he saw and allowing 2.78 goals against on average.

The Flames netminder has two seasons remaining in his contract, each valued at a $6 million cap hit.

A Trade for Linus Ullmark Would Help Bruins & Devils

Linus Ullmark had a standout year in 2023 posting a .924 save percentage and winning the Vezina Trophy award given to the best NHL netminder. He is the other potential target on New Jersey’s radar, according to LeBrun.

A trade involving Ullmark could have significant implications for the Boston Bruins, as outlined by The Athletic’s Fluto Shinzawa in a story published on June 6.

“Clearing Ullmark’s $5 million average annual value and receiving futures in return would be a satisfactory conclusion,” Shinzawa wrote. “Perhaps the New Jersey Devils, who have expressed interest in trading the No. 10 pick in the 2024 NHL Draft, would be a landing spot for the 2023 Vezina Trophy winner.”

This move would also pave the way for Jeremy Swayman to become the No. 1 goalie for Boston without any timesharing as it’s been the case for the past two years. It will also open the door to prospect Brandon Bussi to serve as Swayman’s true backup.

Ullmark, however, would need to leave New Jersey off his no-trade list. The list currently includes 16 teams, but it will go down to feature 15 on July 1.

The Bruins netminder put up a .915 save percentage across 40 games played during the 2024 regular season. He posted a 2.57 goals against average but was relegated to a subpar role in the playoffs, starting only one game against the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Read More