There have been rumors swirling that New Jersey Devils goalie Martin Brodeur has waived his no-trade clause. He is the NHL leader in almost every goalie category, so most teams should line up to have the services of Brodeur, right?
I don’t know about that. Have you ever watched a show like Pawn Stars, where something has more value to the customer than it does to the business? That is Brodeur right now. He is a 41-year-old goalie who is holding on to the final moments in what could be his final season. He is 14-11-4 with a 2.47 GAA and a .900 save percentage; none of those numbers are really popping off the page. What is production like that worth in today’s NHL?
Apparently, the consensus says that the Devils are looking to receive a third-round pick. Lou Lamoriello needs to know that a third-round pick is nowhere near enough for the team to let go of Brodeur. This isn’t like a third-round pick in football, this is a guy who is going to be a shot in the dark. The past 10 third-round picks for the Devils are Ryan Kujawinski, Ben Johnson, Blake Coleman, Scott Wedgewood, Alexander Urbom, Adam Henrique, Corbin McPherson, Nick Palmieri and Kirill Tulupov. As you can see, Henrique is the only name in there that’s worth mentioning. Do you really want to watch the face of your franchise, the man who is in a Devils uniform on NHL 14, wear another uniform for a third-round pick?
Look at some of the other greats who stayed with one team until very late in their career. How do people look at the final Joe Namath year on the St. Louis Rams? How do people feel about Mike Modano spending that last season with the Detroit Red Wings? Ask anyone about Michael Jordan‘s final seasons with the Washington Wizards, and they will have nothing but bad things to say. We don’t want to see the all-time greats wearing another uniform at the very end; it just doesn’t look right.
If Brodeur gets traded, this will be a no-win situation for everyone involved. The Devils will be losing their face for next to nothing, and the team who gets him will not be getting a starting caliber goalie. Brodeur will not be happy in another situation, whether or not he gets ice time.
You feel for everyone involved. Brodeur is sitting the bench while healthy for the first time in his career. Cory Schneider has been one of the better goalies in the league this season, so don’t expect that to change. He just wants to play, but prior to his last start, his play did not warrant more starts.
This is going to be an interesting next couple of days coming up to the trade deadline. I will tell you one thing, if he is traded to the Minnesota Wild, then that March 20 matchup becomes so much more than Zach Parise‘s return to New Jersey; Parise will be completely overshadowed.
For now, it is all speculation. Hopefully Brodeur can end his career in the same place that it started.
Nick Villano is the New Jersey Devils writer for Rant Sports. He also writes for the site’s NBA, NFL and MLB content. You can follow him on Twitter here.