Absolutely: The New Jersey Devils Are Stanley Cup Playoff Material
May 3, 2017; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Washington Capitals center Marcus Johansson (90) handles the puck against the Pittsburgh Penguins during the second period in game four of the second round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at the PPG PAINTS Arena. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

With the additions of Nico Hischier, Brian Boyle, and Marcus Johansson filling offensive voids, the New Jersey Devils may be playoff bound.

Positive changes have been made to the New Jersey Devils.

After being blessed with the first overall draft pick, the selection of Swiss forward Nico Hischier started off the most productive offseason the Devils have had in years. Followed shortly after by the free agent signing of Brian Boyle, size was added to the offense. In conclusion, to everyone’s surprise, on both sides of the deal, Ray Shero made a real splash by trading draft picks to the Washington Capitals for power forward Marcus Johansson.

Scoring a small total of 180 goals for the entirety of the season, the Devils landed themselves third to last in the category. This was certainly an offensive factor that needed to be fixed. Most impressively of the three forward acquisitions, Johansson scored a total of 24 goals last season, good for 53rd in the league. Johansson alone scored 13.3 percent of what his new team did all year.

The only player that scored more than Johansson was Kyle Palmieri, who had 26 goals. Below Palmieri was Adam Henrique and Taylor Hall, both with 20.

Brian Boyle’s offensive statistics impress a bit below Johansson’s, with 13 goals and 12 assists between both teams he played for last year, but it’s not the points category that Boyle excelled in during his NHL career. It has been his size and presence on the attack that makes him a beneficial player. Accumulating 66 minutes of penalties last year, Boyle brings brute force.


New Jersey Devils

Finally, is the Datsyukian Nico Hischier. Although he, of course, has no NHL totals at all, Hischier scored 38 goals and 48 assists, adding up to 86 points over only 57 games for the Halifax Mooseheads in the QMJHL.

The question: whether a team is playoff material is nearly impossible to answer in July, and quite asinine to contemplate, but the question is asked anyway.

And assuming health goes in the way of the team in question, any team that adds three offensive powers can be easily considered playoff material.

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