New Jersey Devils All-Time Team

New Jersey Devils All-Time Team

by February 24, 2022 0 comments

After eight years residing as the Kansas City Scouts and Colorado Rockies, the New Jersey Devils have been settled in New Jersey for nearly four decades. Overall, they have been one of the better NHL expansion franchises, racking up three Stanley Cups. Needless to say, they have had some all-time talent pass through, dating back to their KC days. Guys like Scott Stevens, Scott Niedermayer, and Martin Brodeur of course jump out. The Devils, however, have enough talent to put together a quality All-Time Team.

Make sure to check out all of our other NHL All-Time Teams.

Forwards

Patrik Elias (1996-2006)

The Devils’ lifer, Elias, is the best forward in Devils history. He leads the franchise in goals, assists, and points. In addition to being a part of the latter two Devils Stanley Cup teams, and having his No. 26 up in the Prudential Center rafters. His defining moment of course was his 2000 Eastern Conference Finals Game 7 goal which sent the Devils to the Cup Final. That goal came with a tick over two and a half minutes left.

John MacLean (1983-1997)

MacLean is on the opposite end of the Cup distribution of Elias, only winning the first of the Devils Stanley Cups. He is, however, second to Elias for all-time goals and points in Devils history. As the third-ever first-round pick the Devils made after leaving Colorado, MacLean was big in the Devils’ early days in New Jersey. An overtime goal in the 1988 regular-season finale sent them to the postseason for the first time post-relocation. MacLean then went on a streak of three straight 40 goal seasons afterward.

Travis Zajac (2006-2021)

Zajac, who just hung up the skates last year, played all but 27 career games (regular and postseason) with the Devils. The 15-year veteran ranks top five in games played, goals, assists, and points for the club. The consummate professional did not however finish his career in New Jersey however. The man who drafted him, Lou Lamoriello, acquired Zajac for the New York Islanders for a run at the Stanley Cup. Sadly, the Islanders only made it as far as the Eastern Conference Finals. Zajac however signed a one-day contract to officially retire a Devil later in the year.

Bobby Holik (1992-2002)

Just two years after the Hartford Whalers picked him 10th overall, Holik went on to spend a decade with the Devils. Most famously he was a member of the dreaded Crash Line, which played a huge role in the Devils’ 1995 Cup run. By no means a prolific scorer, he was a player you would rather be with than against, winning two Stanley Cups in total with the club.

Claude Lemieux (1990-1995, 1999-2000)

In one of the worst aging trades in NHL history, Lemieux, after seven years with the Montreal Canadiens, was sent to the Devils for Sylvain Turgeon. In his main stint with the Devils, Lemieux put up 125 goals in five seasons, and an extra 17 in his ’99-’00 stint. The real kicker was that Lemieux was invaluable in the Devils’ first-ever Stanley Cup victory. His 13 postseason goals led the team and earned him Conn Smythe Trophy honors.

Scott Gomez (1999-2007, 2014-2015)

Gomez made history in 1999, becoming the first-ever Alaskan-born NHL player. That, however, was just the start of his impeccable rookie campaign. Gomez’s 51 assist, 70 point season sent him to the All-Star Game as a rookie, as well as won him the Calder Trophy. Additionally, he had a 10 point postseason on way to a Stanley Cup in his first year in the league. After seven years in New Jersey, Gomez spent some time with the New York Rangers and Canadiens, before coming back to the Devils in the 2014-15 season.

Zach Parise (2005-2012)

There was a reason why the Minnesota Wild gave Parise the contract that he did. In seven years with the Devils, Parise had a number of top-notch outings. Excluding the 2010-11 season where he only played 13 games, the Minneapolis native had five straight 60-plus point seasons. That includes a 94 point season in 2008-09, where he finished fifth in MVP voting. Parise also put up eight goals and seven assists in the Devils’ 2012 playoff run, those being his final games with the franchise.

Wilf Paiement (1974-1980)

Paiement, while never playing for the Devils, did play for the Rockies, and priorly the Scouts. Before getting sent off to the Toronto Maple Leafs, Paiement put up enough production to rank 10th in goals in club history, as well as 14th in assists. In his first two seasons in Colorado, he put up back-to-back 80-plus point seasons as well.

Kirk Muller (1984-1991)

Muller spent the first third of his 19-year career in New Jersey. In which he never had a season under 50 points and no season under 70 in his final five with the Devils. Muller also holds three records for the Devils. The first of which is most points in a game with six, coming in 1986. The second is most assists in a game with five, which came all of a year after. Finally, Muller has the franchise record for most points in a season (by a center) in franchise history, with his 94 in 1987-88 tilt.

Brian Gionta (2001-2009)

Gionta’s 48 goal season in 2005-06 still stands as the Devils’ all-time record for most goals in a season. Even while only playing with the team for seven years, he still ranks 11th all-time in goals, and 17th in points to boot. Gionta was also a member of the Devils’ 2003 Cup-winning team, putting up a goal and eight assists that postseason.

Jamie Langenbrunner (2002-2011)

After getting traded by the Dallas Stars in 2002, Langenbrunner immediately put up career-high numbers the following season with the Devils. 22 goals and 33 assists to be exact. Langenbrunner that postseason also put up 11 goals en route to a Stanley Cup win over the then Mighty Ducks of Anaheim. After several more solid outings on the ‘ZZ Popps’ line after the cup win, Langenbrunner was traded back to the Stars before closing out his career with the St. Louis Blues.

Pat Verbeek (1982-1989)

Before Gionta, it was Verbeek’s 46 goals in 1987-88 that was the longstanding Devils’ single-season record. Likely more known for his time elsewhere, Verbeek was still good in New Jersey, with 170 goals and 150 assists in his tenure. His trade to the Whalers was also the catalyst that led the Devils to acquire Lemieux down the road as well. So his trade wasn’t too bad in the end.

Defensemen

Scott Stevens (1991-2004)

This goes without saying, but Stevens was one of hockey’s all-time best punishers patrolling the blue line. Due to the Blues’ signing then restricted free agent Brendan Shannahan, New Jersey was able to get him for essentially nothing. Despite a turbulent start to his Devils’ stint, Stevens was worth his weight in gold wearing the red and black. No Norris trophies to his name, but he never once had a negative plus-minus in his career, and only had under 20 assists just four times in his 13 years as a Devil. The three Cup wins, a Conn Smythe, on top of being a Hockey Hall of Famer don’t hurt his resume either.

Scott Niedermayer (1991-2004)

Having Stevens and Niedermayer is one thing, having them at the same time is another. The former No. 3 overall pick was a cornerstone piece on each of the Devils’ three Stanley Cup-winning teams. From 1998 to 2004, Niedermayer averaged a whopping 24 minutes of ice time per game. His lone Norris Trophy win also came in his final year with the Devils, before he left for the Ducks. The Hockey Hall of Famer also sits second in team assists, and sixth in points as well.

Ken Daneyko (1983-2003)

Now we finally get to Mr. Devil himself. Daneyko spent his entire 20-year career with the team. His team record 1283 games played, and 2516 penalty minutes shouldn’t be broken for quite some time. Daneyko was also a member of all three Cup teams, and almost never played in the 2003 Ducks Series. He was inserted into the lineup for the seventh and final game of the series, which New Jersey won 3-0. His No. 3 was sent to the rafters in 2006, just under two months after Stevens, making him the second-ever player with that honor.

Andy Greene (2006-2020)

Greene, who spent a half dozen years as Devils’ captain, ranks sixth all-time in games play for New Jersey with 923. A hand injury suffered in the 2016-17 season ended up costing him an ironman streak. Greene had a streak of 350-plus straight games played going at the time. His 197 assists with the team also have him at 15th in team history as well.

Bruce Driver (1983-1995)

Driver spent all but three years of his career with the Devils. With that in mind, he ranks eighth in team assists and 11th in points. Driver also served as team captain in the 1991-92 season, serving as the buffer between Muller and Stevens. After winning the team’s first Stanley Cup Finals in 1995, he took a hop skip and a jump up to Manhattan, spending his last three years as a Ranger.

Brian Rafalski (1999-2007)

Rafalski spent his early professional years over in Europe before the Devils gave him his NHL break at the end of the 1990s. New Jersey even paired him up with Stevens, a combo that lasted until the latter retired in 2004. Along with his two Stanley Cups with the Devils, Rafalski never saw his plus-minus head into the negatives once in his tenure.

Goalies

Martin Brodeur (1991-2014)

What else can be said about Brodeur at this point? A four-time Vezina Trophy winner, a three-time Stanley Cup Champion, and arguably the greatest goaltender to ever live. Few teams can ever say they had a multi-decade-long cornerstone in net. The Devils had just that in Brodeur. From 1997 to 2008, he never started less than 70 games, in addition to never seeing his goals-against average go above 2.6.

Cory Schneider (2013-2020)

The other netminder getting the nod is the man who ultimately replaced Brodeur. Schneider was traded from the Vancouver Canucks to the Devils for what ended up being Bo Horvat. After a year splitting starts with Brodeur, the longtime Devil split town, and Schneider was rewarded with a seven-year contract extension. Although his numbers dipped at the very end, Schneider was excellent for the bulk of his stint with the Devils. More important than that he did a good job replacing a Hall of Fame goalie.

Head Coach

Jacques Lemaire (1993-1998, 2009-2011)

After a long career with the Canadiens, Lemaire spent a few years manning the bench there before moving over to New Jersey. The defensive-minded coach has the most coaching wins in team history with 276. In addition, Lemaire also was there for the Devils’ first Stanley Cup in 1995. In total, Lemaire also won 34 playoff games for the club in just four postseason births.


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