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Devils Plan to ‘Investigate’ Juuse Saros Trade in Summer

Devils GM Tom Fitzgerald plans to add an elite 1A to his goaltending tandem with Jake Allen this summer.



New Jersey Devils

According to a report, the New Jersey Devils are going to ‘investigate’ a Juuse Saros trade this summer.

This should come as no surprise. It’s well-documented that the Devils were pushing hard for a goaltending upgrade this season.

General manager Tom Fitzgerald chased top goaltenders such as Jacob Markstrom, Juuse Saros, and John Gibson this summer. They wound up dumping Vitek Vanecek to the San Jose Sharks in exchange for Kaapo Kahkonen while also acquiring Jake Allen from the Montreal Canadiens.

Kahkonen is a pending unrestricted free agent. It’s expected the Devils will let his deal expire and let him walk to free agency. Allen, however, has an extra year on his deal and is expected to be the backup or 1B goaltender next season, a plan that Fitzgerald explained to New Jersey Hockey Now.

Part of that plan has been executed with Allen now a Devil. The main part of said plan is coming this summer as Fitzgerald, like he said just hours after the trade deadline, plans to acquire a frontline starter after the season.

“[With] Vitek, it was an opportunity to, like you said earlier, he had a year left in his contract,” Fitzgerald explained. “To get out of that and to set ourselves up this summer with a lot of flexibility in that position, [we can] pick and choose what we want to do.”

It’s no secret that the Devils came quite close to acquiring Jacob Markstrom ahead of the NHL Trade Deadline. Markstrom is still going to be a main focus this summer as an option on the goaltending market. However, Saros is going to be another priority for Fitzgerald, one that he already began to explore with Nashville Predators general manager Barry Trotz.

According to a report via The Athletic, Pierre LeBrun explains Fitzgerald’s plan to acquire a 1A goaltender.

“The Devils still aim to go out and trade for a bona fide No. 1 if possible this summer, and that includes re-engaging with the Calgary Flames on Jacob Markstrom but also investigating the situation with Nashville Predators goalie Juuse Saros and also a few other situations around the league.”

Allen certainly impressed in his Devils debut despite giving up a goal on the first shot he saw wearing Devil horns and another questionable one from the far wall. However, he recovered well in the final 40 minutes helping New Jersey claim two points on Thursday.

Regardless, Allen is half of the puzzle for the Devils’ path to solidifying their goaltending situation and returning to the elite status they maintained in the 2022-23 season.

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