Today has been a busy day for the New Jersey Devils and their top prospects. The team assigned Pavel Zacha to Albany and then called him up. The team announced this evening that they signed Steve Santini to an entry level contract and assigned him to New Jersey. Hours later, they announced they signed Miles Wood, also to an entry level contract with an initial assignment in New Jersey. I have my reactions to those latter two signings in this post. Now there's (hopefully) one more. The Devils announced within this hour that they signed defenseman Josh Jacobs to a three-year entry level contract. You may know him as Joshua Jacobs, but Josh appears to be just fine.
Unlike Santini and Wood, the contract will start next season and he will be assigned to Albany on an amateur try-out (ATO) contract. You won't see him on the ice in Newark tomorrow. Like Zacha, Jacobs played for Sarnia - his first season in the OHL after spending 2014-15 with Michigan State. I suppose playing in juniors was preferable to playing for Tom Anastos. Anyway, Jacobs' first season saw him earn four goals, twenty assists, and 149 shots on net. The Sting got eliminated in the first round of the OHL playoffs by the Sault Ste. Marie Greyhounds (featuring Devils prospect Blake Speers). While Zacha went off in that series, Jacobs put up a decent five assists in those same seven games. Still, his play must have impressed the Devils' scouts. They would like Jacobs to get a taste of the organization and have him around another playoff environment in Albany. So they locked him up with a contract. After Saturday's game, he'll get to be re-united with his teammate Zacha and meet two more in Santini and Wood along with the rest of the A-Devs.
After this season, I would expect Jacobs to stay in Albany. He's already twenty years old, so he would be eligible to play there in 2016-17. His signing is likely in advance of some roster turnover that is bound to happen in the Capital District this summer. I don't know if going back to Sarnia for his overage season helps him; but I'll leave that opinion to those who are more aware of his game. I wouldn't be surprised if he got a taste of the AHL before their season ends on April 16. After all, they signed him now instead of a few weeks later. They didn't want to wait to sign him for a reason.
In any case, the Devils signed Santini, Wood, and Jacobs this evening and they called up Zacha. What do you expect out of Jacobs in Albany and in general? Will the Devils sign any more prospects tonight? In the near future? Please leave your answers and other thoughts about the Jacobs signing in the comments.