COMMENTARY | The New Jersey Devils have been one of the best franchises in the NHL over the past 25 years.
During that span, they have been a part of five Stanley Cup Final appearances while winning three championships. The Devils have clearly had a lot of talented players through the years, so coming up with an all-time roster for the team is actually not that easy.
In order to come up with an all-time team for the New Jersey Devils, there had to be some sort of way to cut down players so, therefore, the roster will only include players who played at least three seasons with the team.
Here is the New Jersey Devils' all-time team with statistics from what I believe was each player's best season in New Jersey:
"A" Patrik Elias (2000-01: 40 goals, 96 points, +45), Kirk Muller (1987-88: 37 goals, 94 points, +19), John MacLean (1988-89: 42 goals, 87 points, +26)
The top line is made up of the franchise's three best forwards. Elias and Muller are both capable of playing left wing and center next to the goal-scoring MacLean. Elias, the team's all-time leading scorer, would be one of the two alternate captains for the team.
Parise's tenure in New Jersey obviously ended on a sour note for fans, but it is difficult not to include him. Verbeek edged out another smaller-sized winger in Brian Gionta for the spot. Arnott is the center on the line because his big-bodied presence would help clear the ice for his two smaller line mates.
Brendan Shanahan (1989-90: 30 goals, 72 points, +15), Bobby Holik (1997-98: 29 goals, 65 points, +23), Claude Lemieux (1991-92: 41 goals, 68 points, +9)
This line would have been such a pain in the neck to play against. All three forwards played with an in-your-face style and were not afraid to rack up penalty minutes. They could also add a lot of offense.
Sergei Brylin (2000-01: 23 goals, 52 points, +25), John Madden (2000-01: 23 goals, 38 points, +24), Randy McKay (1997-98: 24 goals, 48 points, +30)
The versatile Brylin, the only forward to be on all three Stanley Cup-winning teams, has to be on the roster. Madden was one of the NHL's best defensive centers during his prime and was recognized for it when he won the Frank J. Selke Award in 2000-01. McKay was a prototypical Devil and a fan-favorite.
(Honorable Mentions: Stephane Richer, Patrik Sundstrom)
"C" Scott Stevens (1993-94: 18 goals, 78 points, +53), Brian Rafalski (2000-01: 9 goals, 52 points, +36)
Stevens is obviously the team's captain. It is hard to imagine that he did not win the Norris Trophy as the NHL's top defenseman for the 1993-94 season, or for any season for that matter. Rafalski, one of the team's best puck-moving defenders, is paired with him as they usually were in the early-2000s.
Ken Daneyko (1998-99: 2 goals, 11 points, +27), "A" Scott Niedermayer (2003-04: 14 goals, 54 points, +20)
Daneyko, a rugged defenseman, and Niedermayer, a smooth-skating defender, also played on the same defensive pairing on numerous occasions. Niedermayer, the all-time team's second alternate captain, won the Norris Trophy for his 2003-04 season.
Colin White (2000-01: 1 goal, 20 points, +32), Bruce Driver (1987-88: 15 goals, 55 points, +7)
The team's last pairing also has a stay-at-home defenseman and an offensive-minded partner. White and Driver, two longtime Devils, would have been a great third pairing, to say the least.
Martin Brodeur (2006-07: 48-23-7, .922 save percentage, 2.18 goals against average, and 12 shutouts)
This is a shocker, right?
Brodeur's best season came in 2006-07 when he won a record 48 games, led the NHL in shutouts and took home yet another Vezina Trophy.
Head Coach: Pat Burns
Assistant Coaches: Jacques Lemaire and Larry Robinson
Goaltending Coach: Jacques Caron
General Manager: Lou Lamoriello
Michael Pellegrini has followed the New Jersey Devils since the mid to late 1990s when they had players like Doug Gilmour and Dave Andreychuk in the later stages of their career.
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