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On John Moore, Patrick Maroon, and free agency

June 26, 2018, 10:54 AM ET [43 Comments]
Todd Cordell
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On John Moore

Earlier this off-season I suggested the New Jersey Devils should walk away from John Moore​.

The logic is simple: personnel wise, the Devils have been lacking talent on the back end for years and yet the team has continually fared worse with Moore on the ice.

Out-performing the rest of the defense core was a low bar – particularly in 2015-16 and 2016-17 – and Moore was not able to do it.

He's not an efficient point producer at 5v5, he's not a powerplay quarterback, he's not a possession driver, and he's not a good shot suppressor.

Though the Devils have plenty of cap space to play with, it doesn't make sense to pay a good price for a guy who objectively made the team worse. And it sounds like that's what they'd have to do to keep him around.

This from TSN's Frank Seravalli:

He may not have the same name recognition as Green or Johnson, but John Moore has rocketed toward the top of the class as a free agent in demand.

The Moore camp has fielded interest from more than a dozen NHL teams and has already conducted interviews with eight different clubs.

Given the interest, and thin free agent crop, Moore seems like a good bet to be paid handsomely. I'd much rather spend on Calvin de Haan, who has been noticeably better over the last few seasons.

On Patrick Maroon

Maroon made it no secret he loved his tenure with the Devils and he did make an impact – particularly as a net front presence on the power play, where he was a clear upgrade over Brian Boyle.

While he made it to the free agent window and is talking to other teams – why wouldn't he? – re-signing in New Jersey remains an option, albeit perhaps a costly one.

Craig Custance of The Athletic recently provided updates on several notable free agents​ and ranked them by their expected costs. Here is what he had to say about Maroon, who was in the $5 million+ range:

Pat Maroon, F, New Jersey Devils – There were six teams showing significant interest at the start of the interview process for Maroon and that number is expected to increase. Don’t count out New Jersey here though, he was a good fit after being acquired by the Devils and both sides expect to touch base at some point this week once the market takes shape.

That's a lot of dough for Maroon but term is key here. If Maroon signs for, say, three years, price isn't a big factor given the Devils' cap situation now and moving forward.

That said, I'd rather spend a little more on someone like David Perron if the term is similar. Perron is a more gifted offensive player and is a right-handed shot, which the Devils could really use.

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