There are three certainties in life: death, taxes, and Martin Brodeur between the pipes for the New Jersey Devils. Well, one of those might be coming to an end a bit sooner than we all expected. This season has long been rumored to be Brodeur’s swan song in the NHL. The Devils traded for Cory Schneider on draft day and have effectively handed over the keys to the crease to the former Vancouver backup. Besides a brief period earlier in the season, Marty has been the Devils backup, something Brodeur is not used to in his 22 year career.
For the majority of his two decades with the Devils, Brodeur has been the model soldier for the team. He has taken several discounts to remain a Devil has been the face of a franchise that has rarely had any super stars.
However, Renaud Lavoie of et Journal de Montreal reports that Brodeur met with Devils GM Lou Lamiorello this past Thursday to discuss his future with the team.
#devils Martin Brodeur met with Lou Lamoriello Thursday to talk about his future with the team.
— Renaud Lavoie (@LavoieRenaud) February 9, 2014
While that statement is very vague, it is highly doubtful they were planning Brodeur’s retirement dinner. It has speculated throughout this season that Brodeur wants out of Jersey, preferably to a destination where he can regain the starting role. A Stanley Cup contender would also be a desirable destination as well.
The Devils are by no means shopping Brodeur for a trade. However, if the veteran wants out, it is very likely that the team will honor his request. Comparisons are already being made to Ray Bourque, who famously requested a trade to the Colorado Avalanche in 2000, where he eventually won a Cup.
The question remains; would any teams be interested in an expensive rental like Brodeur? Sure the name along will create some buzz, but Marty’s best days are long behind him. A team would have to be pretty desperate to spend the assets necessary to made a trade for Brodeur.
One team that may be interested in the Minnesota Wild, who find themselves in a difficult situation with Josh Harding battling Multiple Sclerosis. The disease can flare up at any time and force Harding out of the lineup. The Wild are intent on making a playoff run this season, and Brodeur could be the insurance policy they need.
Still, I can’t wrap my brain around Martin Brodeur in any other jersey than the Devils. Before moving to Ohio after college and becoming a Columbus Blue Jackets fan, I grew up in New Jersey and was raised a Devils fan. Brodeur was my favorite player and since my Devils fandom really started around the 1992-93 time frame, he is the only starting goaltender for the Devils I have ever known.
Brodeur’s days are numbered in the NHL, so I can understand not wanting to spend the last month on the bench. Still, I really hoped to see Marty go out a Devil.