New Jersey Devils: Should Ray Shero be Fired as the General Manager?

The New Jersey Devils had high expectations heading into the 2019-2020 season. New Jersey has fell flat of those expectations so far this season. After losing to the New York Rangers at home 4-0 on Saturday afternoon, it is another painful reminder for this team that they have not been very good so far this season.

The Devils have had rumblings of them firing Head Coach John Hynes either during the season or after the season. Other than John Hynes, what blame does General Manager Ray Shero receive as well?

Shero has been the general manager for this hockey club since May 4, 2015. He has only been to the postseason one time and that was in 2017-2018. New Jersey was the second wild card team in the Eastern Conference that season. They lost to the Tampa Bay Lightning in five games.

A lot of people picked the New Jersey Devils to be in the playoffs this season and I was one of them. He drafted Jack Hughes first overall in 2019, he traded for Gustav Nyqvist and P.K. Subban, and Ray Shero made some other key moves.

It appears as if they are not panning out. I know it takes patience, but sports is a what have you done for me lately league. In that essence, Shero hasn’t proved squat with himself for him to be the team’s general manager beyond the 2019-2020 season.

I don’t think a coaching change would fix this team. John Hynes has done the best he has can with what has been given to him. If John Hynes were to be fired today, he would have another coaching job somewhere either in the NHL or in the AHL.

As for Ray Shero, I don’t know if he would have another front-office job. There is a reason why the Pittsburgh Penguins got rid of him after the 2013-2014 season. Even though Pittsburgh made it to the second round of the playoffs that season, they lost to the New York Rangers in seven games that year. The Penguins blew a 3-1 lead in that series.

Shero only won one Stanley Cup in that tenure with Head Coach Dan Bylsma in 2009.

The personnel in Pittsburgh started to get worse. They had no depth what so ever and you can’t win in the NHL without it.

The New Jersey Devils have the second-fewest points in the Eastern Conference. They are currently in last place so far this season in the Metropolitan Division. New Jersey’s record so far this season is 9-12-4 with 22 points.

Only the Detroit Red Wings are worse than them so far this season. Their record is 7-18-3 with 17 points.

It might be possible that the Devils trade away Taylor Hall at the trade deadline. Hall has scored four goals and has recorded 17 assists in 25 games so far this season. His plus/minus is -9.

The NHL Trade Deadline will be on February 24, 2020.

It will be interesting to see whether or not they can get a trade done before then.

Three other potential players that could be traded before then are Wayne Simmonds, Andy Greene, and Sami Vatanen.

Simmonds has scored four goals and has recorded seven assists so far this season. His plus/minus is -9.

Greene has recorded four assists so far this season. His plus/minus is 5.

Vatanen has scored four goals and has recorded five assists so far this season. His plus/minus is 2.

One of the biggest problems has been Nico Hischier. He was the number one overall pick in the 2017 NHL Draft. Hischier has not blossomed yet. He has scored three goals and has recorded 11 assists so far this season. His plus/minus is -6.

You know this roster has a personnel problem when Blake Coleman is tied for second on the team in goals with Kyle Palmieri with nine. Palmieri has recorded seven assists so far this season and Coleman has recorded five assists so far this season.

Kyle Palmieri‘s plus/minus is 2.

Blake Coleman‘s plus/minus is 5.

Nikita Gusev has scored five goals and has recorded six assists so far this season. His plus/minus is -3.

Jack Hughes has occurred in 24 games so far this season. He has scored four goals and has recorded 11 assists so far this season. Hughes’s plus/minus is -8. He has not lived up to expectations so far this season and it could be a concern moving forward.

Another interesting thing is that maybe Ray Shero does not know how to scout or recognize his personnel. This franchise needs someone who knows personnel better then he does. Shero will continue to make this team maybe worse and not better.

What if he whiffs on a potential Taylor Hall deal?

Ray Shero already whiffed on a P.K. Subban deal. Subban has been horrible so far this season. In 25 games played, he has only scored two goals and has recorded three assists so far this season. His plus/minus is -10.

P.K. Subban is not the same anymore. He will be a free agent after the 2021-2022 season Subban has a $9 million cap hit for the next couple of years.

Goaltending has been a monster issue for the New Jersey Devils so far this season. Cory Schneider had to be placed on waivers. He cleared waivers and Schneider is currently in the AHL with the Binghamton Devils.

He has not been much better in the AHL so far this season. Cory Schneider has appeared in two games. His record is 0-2 with a .871 save percentage and a 4.13 GAA.

In six NHL games so far this season, Schneider’s record is 0-4-1 with a .852 save percentage and a 4.59 GAA.

The injuries have really derailed his career. He is 33 years old. Cory Schneider has a $6 million cap hit. He will be a free agent after the 2021-2022 season.

Louis Domingue has been the goalie who was called up in favor of him. In three games played so far this season, his record is 1-1 with a .926 save percentage and a 1.76 GAA. He has started in two of the games.

MacKenzie Blackwood has been the other goalie that has played in games so far this season. Blackwood has started in 17 of them and appeared in 18 of them. His record so far this season is 8-7-3 with a .898 save percentage and a 3.12 GAA, along with one shutout.

This has been a major problem for the New Jersey Devils ever since Martin Brouder retired. I do not understand where this franchise is heading. New Jersey needs a new identity. I think they are a well-run origination. The Devils need better personnel and better coaching.

New Jersey has not been to the Stanley Cup Finals since 2012. They lost to the Los Angeles Kings in six games that season. The New Jersey Devils have not won it all since 2003 in seven games against the Anaheim Mighty Ducks.

Ray Shero deserves most of the blame for the failures of this hockey team because they should be better than they are. Coaching plays a big role in this sport but not getting a coach the proper players to succeed means that you are not doing your job either.

Ray Shero will be walking out the door with Head Coach John Hynes at the end of the 2019-2020 season and it could potentially be earlier depending on how bad it gets. New Jersey’s fan base is sick and tired of mediocrity. They should be competing for playoff positioning year in and year out.

How do you feel about the front office of the New Jersey Devils? Leave a comment below.

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Follow Glenn on Twitter @glennkaplan13.

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