5 Burning Questions For New Jersey Devils Entering 2015-16 NHL Season

By Nick Villano

5 Burning Questions For New Jersey Devils Entering 2015-16 NHL Season

New Jersey Devils
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The New Jersey Devils went all in on their rebuild (finally). They were in a half-hearted rebuild since Ilya Kovalchuk bolted for Russia in 2013. Now, they are building a young core that can improve through the next decade. What does that mean for this season? It could end up pretty bad. While bad, there is still hope. Here are five questions that need to be answered before we know what kind of season is in front of this team.

5. What Does John Hynes Bring?

John Hynes, New Jersey Devils
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5. What Does John Hynes Bring?

John Hynes, New Jersey Devils
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Ray Shero wanted his guy to coach this team. John Hynes was coaching the Pittsburgh Penguins minor league affiliate. He was a relative unknown when hired by the Devils. What does he bring to the table? His philosophies make sense. He looks like he is trying to simplify the game, which is exactly what a young team needs. He could become the perfect coach for this team in the long run.

4. Can The Defense Carry The Season?

New Jersey Devils, Cory Schneider
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4. Can The Defense Carry The Season?

New Jersey Devils, Cory Schneider
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The defense has always been the strength for this franchise. This has never been a team that will kill you offensively (outside of that 2000 Stanley Cup winner). This team will especially need their defensive core to hold them above water. If they have any chance of winning games, they will need to keep people off the board, with players like Cory Schneider and Andy Greene leading the way.

3. Will Pavel Zacha Stick Around?

Pavel Zacha, New Jersey Devils
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3. Will Pavel Zacha Stick Around?

Pavel Zacha, New Jersey Devils
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The Devils' first-round pick in the 2015 draft could be the least talked about possible superstar in recent memory. Most of that has to do with Connor McDavid and Jack Eichel being lockdown superstars already drafted. The Devils have a huge forward with a scoring touch. He is making a legitimate case to be on the team from Day 1. We will know this answer relatively quickly.

2. Can Reid Boucher Prove To Be A Top-Line Winger?

Reid Boucher, New Jersey Devils
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2. Can Reid Boucher Prove To Be A Top-Line Winger?

Reid Boucher, New Jersey Devils
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Right now, the Devils are trying to figure out who will go on the top line's right wing. They know Travis Zajac (if he isn't traded) and Michael Cammalleri are locks, but since Jaromir Jagr was traded, they haven't established who the final top-liner will be. If Reid Boucher can find the scoring touch that had him breaking Steven Stamkos' scoring records in juniors, he would be a perfect fit.

1. How Bad Could It Get?

New Jersey Devils
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1. How Bad Could It Get?

New Jersey Devils
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It can always get really bad -- just ask the Toronto Maple Leafs. Some have this team as the worst in the Eastern Conference. Almost nobody has them making the playoffs. They could be a surprise team, but it isn't likely. They aren't the worst team in the league, but their talent level is in the bottom 10. They need half their young players to break out in a big way if they are to have any chance of competing.

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