After tonight's 1-2 loss to the New York Islanders, the New Jersey Devils announced their first set of cuts from this year's training camp. Tom Gulitti reported at Fire & Ice that seven players will be returning to their junior teams and Alexandre Goulet has been released from his amateur tryout offer. Here's a list of the seven players and where they are going.
- Brandon Baddock, F, Edmonton Oil Kings of the WHL
- MacKenzie Blackwood, G, Barrie Colts of the OHL
- Connor Chatham, F, Flint Firebirds of the OHL
- Josh Jacobs, D, Sarnia Sting of the OHL
- Ryan Rehill, D, Kamloops Blazers of the WHL
- Blake Speers, F, Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds of the OHL
- Colton White, D, Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds of the OHL
All seven will remain with the organization as prospects. It makes sense to cut these players first. The Ontario Hockey League and Western Hockey League seasons both begin on Thursday. Only White suited up for a preseason game with the Devils and Blackwood was a backup. Neither had a realistic shot of making the New Jersey Devils, they can't go play in Albany, and so it's right to send them to their respective team in juniors. The same applies for the others cut from camp. As for Goulet, he remains unattached and will return to Charlottetown of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, whose season has already begun.
These cuts do trim down the roster, though it's still filled with all of top prospects (Pavel Zacha, John Quenneville), hopefuls from Albany, the two professional try out players (and the other two amateur try outs), and fringe NHLers. Gulitti reported that the next set of cuts are expected to come after the next two preseason games. They're both back-to-back and there will be three full days before their penultimate preseason game next week. With Albany's season looming as well as New Jersey's, the next ones to be cut will likely be more substantial.
Do you have any reaction to these cuts? Who do you think will be next after Saturday? Please leave your answers and other thoughts about the team's training camp roster in the comments. Thank you for reading.