Friedman on Devils: ‘They’re clearing the decks’

Watch out for the New Jersey Devils this summer.

Elliotte Friedman and Jeff Marek shared sentiments on 31 teams ahead of the trade deadline in their latest 31 Thoughts: The Podcast, which was recorded Wednesday and released overnight Thursday.

Friedman’s notions on the Devils are something to keep in mind toward the off-season.

Here are the exchanges between the two hosts on this franchise, with Marek tossing to Friedman initially for his thoughts on the team headed into Monday.

“Sell, sell, sell, sell, sell. It’s like the bad car salesman commercials of the 1970s,” said Friedman.

“You can see that for Marcus Johansson,” agreed Marek. “But can you also see that for someone like Damon Severson?”

“Severson was a guy who was on the market last year and they pulled him back,” recalled Friedman. “I think there’s a lot that New Jersey will consider doing.”

“I’m with you,” concurred Marek. “I think they are open for business.”

“I don’t think they have a lot of sacred cows there,” said Friedman. “And I’ll tell you this: We all talk about Detroit offer sheet - I wonder about New Jersey. I think they could be the offer sheet team this summer.”

“Anything more on Hall?” wondered Marek.

“No, just really quiet,” answered Friedman. “Really quiet. Really quiet.”

“Offer sheet team hey,” continued Marek.

“I think they could be it,” said Friedman.

“Would that be in order to entice someone like Taylor Hall to sign an extension, or in anticipation of no Taylor Hall being there,” wondered Marek.

“No, I think it would be, ‘Look Taylor, this is what we’re going to do,’” said Friedman. “I’m watching them. They’re clearing the decks, right. You can see it. You don’t do that unless you have a plan. What’s the other side of that plan. It’s got to be Taylor Hall and someone. You’re not convincing Taylor Hall to stay if it’s just him. So it’s Taylor Hall and it’s somebody else.”

Hall is in the sixth season of his seven-year, $42 million contract, which means he’ll be eligible to sign an extension as early as July 1. That’s the same time the Devils could potentially offer-sheet an unsigned restricted free agent.

Contract-related info via CapFriendly