Since the departure of Zach Parise via free-agency, the New Jersey Devils have been in pursuit of someone to fill the huge hole left by the former captain’s exodus. It looks like that someone could be free-agent winger Alex Semin.
The former Washington Capitals forward has been fielding offers from several teams and the Devils appear to be one of the teams most interested in acquiring his services.
Several online rumors have New Jersey and the Detroit Red Wings as the front-runner’s in the Semin sweepstakes and it is believed the Devils may have already made a significant offer to oft maligned winger. While there have been no substantiated reports of an actual offer, it’s intriguing nonetheless.
I emailed Semin’s agent, Mark Gandler without a response. But, Hockeybuzz’s Todd Cordell did receive a response form Gandler. Semin’s agent would not confirm whether Semin has actually received any offers. He would only say that his client planned to play in the NHL next season. That is in itself is promising. Many, including myself, thought Semin may ditch the NHL and return to Russia to play hockey.
It should be noted that Semin’s agents have offices in New Jersey which may have given birth to all the speculation.
Semin collected just 54 points in each of past two years after a 40-goal, 80-point breakout season in 2009-10. He has a reputation for being lazy and uninterested, which led to several benching’s during his tenure in Washington.
However, the same thing was said about Ilya Kovalchuk before he put on the red and black of New Jersey. Head coach Pete Deboer and Jacques Lemaire before him tinkered with Kovalchuk’s game to make him a more complete player and there is no reason to believe the same thing can’t be done with Semin.
If the Devils are truly in on Semin, expect a deal to come down sometime in the next few days. The New Jersey faithful are still fuming after the Devils lost out on Parise. Signing Semin to play with fellow Russian Kovalchuk could be just the band-aid needed to cover the scar left behind by being burned by Parise.
A tweet that I think all Devils fans might enjoy…
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