According to Rich Chere of the Star Ledger, the trade for Jason Arnott will not take the New Jersey Devils out of the Ilya Kovalchuk sweepstakes. The article features a few quotes from GM Lou Lamoriello, but we found this one most interesting:
“We definitely will do everything we can. The priority right now is to get David Clarkson signed and Paul Martin signed. And we’ll see what Ilya Kovalchuk’s thought process is.”
David Clarkson seemed poised for a breakout season but lost almost half a year to injuries. Before going down he registered 15 points in 25 games with 44 PIM, making him an option as a second line right wing. When he returned in March, he lost some playing time to Brian Rolston, Niclas Bergfors and Kovalchuk.
If he can manage to see top six minutes and continually see top on the top powerplay unit we could be looking at 20 goals, 25 assists and 150+ PIM with about 10 PP. Deeper leagues certainly can see value here.
Paul Martin earned a cool 3.8 million last season and may be looking for a change of scenery as he enters unrestricted free agency. The 29-year-old never capitalized on his sophomore season when he registered 37 points for the Devils and only played 22 games this past season. It will be interesting to see what the Minnesota native decides to do as we approach July 1st.