As we slowly approach September, teams are still looking to fill out their rosters and add depth. On Friday, the New Jersey Devils did just this, signing veteran forward Drew Stafford to a one-year, $800,000 contract.
Drew Stafford Signs with New Jersey Devils
He was in the final year of a two year, $8.7 million contract signed back on June 30, 2015 with the Jets. When the contract was signed, Stafford had just scored 19 points in his first 26 games in Winnipeg after being acquired in the Tyler Myers–Evander Kane trade.
However, in recent seasons, his production has dipped, with 2016-17 being one of the lowest marks of his career. Upon arriving in Boston in a deadline deal, in which half of his salary was retained, Stafford slightly increased his production, scoring four goals and eight points in 18 games as a Bruin.
In the postseason, the Milwaukee, Wisconsin native scored two goals in Boston’s first round exit at the hands of the Ottawa Senators.
Once a productive second line scorer, Stafford is now a bottom six, depth player. The New Jersey Devils are picking up a cheap, veteran player who can still provide in a minor role in the lineup. Stafford was lucky to receive a contract, not a professional try-out, from the Devils as well. This late in the summer, it is common to see players like Drew Stafford receive an invite to camp, rather than a guaranteed contract.
Of course, if Stafford doesn’t have a good camp or is beaten out by one of the Devils younger forwards, New Jersey can easily place him on waivers to have a veteran presence with the Albany Devils of the American Hockey League.
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