New Jersey Devils' Best Trade Of The Past Year

We can speak about the strong trades that have helped shape the New Jersey Devils over the past year involving Vitek Vanecek and Timo Meier, but neither of those may be the best trade of the past year as the Devils also acquired John Marino as well. Each of the three positions were addressed and it is a reason for the success this season.

First was trading down a handful of picks in the second round of last year's draft and throwing in a third round pick to acquire the signing rights to now starting goaltender Vanecek who has performed well for the team. His numbers don't pop as the Devils don't allow a ton of shots. But he has been exactly what the team needs.

The trade deadline saw the Devils land the biggest fish in Meier, but it cost a fair amount. One of the first round picks is a guarantee, but the second round pick they gave up only turns into a second first rounder if the Devils make the conference finals this season. Of course top prospects Fabian Zetterlund, who was contributing this season, and Shakir Mukhamadullin were included, but the latter isn't a guarantee yet and wasn't going to help the Devils win now. Why this trade is still a good one for the Devils is due to the fact that they have Meier under team control after the season and can either sign him or flip him for nearly the cost to acquire him in the first place.

Now while the Pittsburgh Penguins were altering their defence, the Devils came along and took full advantage of that by acquiring Marino. It cost them Ty Smith and a third round pick, but Marino has been one of the best shutdown defencemen in the NHL this season. Paired with Ryan Graves, they have been lights out for the Devils, while Smith has gotten into just nine games for the Penguins this season. In terms of how this trade has turned out in the short-term, it has been great for New Jersey, making it their best trade of the past year.

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