A Way For Martin Brodeur To Stay In New Jersey

It appears the final chapter of the Martin Brodeur saga has yet to be written.  In a

Martin Brodeur is perhaps on the brink of leaving the New Jersey Devils.  (Photo credit:  James Teterenko/Wiki Commons)

Martin Brodeur is perhaps on the brink of leaving the New Jersey Devils. (Photo credit: James Teterenko/Wiki Commons)

recent interview with ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun, Brodeur mentioned that he not only wants to play next year, he believes there are some organizations that could utilize him as a No. 1 netminder.

Let’s get this out of the way first.  Everyone knows he’s not a star goalie anymore, or even a really good one.  For the second straight season, his save percentage sat at .901…the worst of his career.  59 goalies played 21 games or more this year.  Martin Brodeur was 51st in save percentage.  Of those same 59, he was 55th in save percentage in 5-on-5 play.  His GAA was 2.51, his second-worst posting in a season where he played more than 30 games.  At this point, he’s a backup and should see backup ice time.

While both Marty and the Devils’ views are worlds apart, I think there is a way for both teams to bridge the gap.  For one, Brodeur needs to realize that no one is going to pay him the money he wants.  His name alone holds more monetary value than his actual on-ice performance.

Is some team really going to offer him more than a million bucks or so?  I can’t see it.And if someone does offer him a “No. 1 role”, is it going to be significantly more playing time than him being a backup with NJ?  Let’s briefly look at the teams that have been hot for him the last year or so.  Minnesota nearly got him at the deadline. Capgeek says they have just under $23 million to play with in the offseason.  Matt Moulson is a free agent, so is Ilya Bryzgalov (if they really want him again).  With Niklas Backstrom and Josh Harding both under contract next year, I can’t see the Wild spending significant money on a goaltender.

Consider the new management in Pittsburgh and I would assume the Penguins don’t really see Martin Brodeur fitting in their short-term or long-term plans of personnel.  The Blackhawks?  They have just under $5 million in space left, with a contract due to Ben Smith.  Being that tight against the cap, I can’t imagine Stan Bowman sees Marty as a efficient use of resources.

If it’s ONLY about money, the Devils should not let him go.  Give him a one-year deal.  Overpay him a bit…maybe $2 million or so.  Tell him he will get about 25 starts.  If he doesn’t go for that, really, what more can the Devils do?  And if Marty accepts that, he’ll keep his legend status in that he played for one team in his whole career.  There aren’t many stars in any sport who have gracefully accepted a backup position for the betterment of the team.  This would only enhance the image of his career.

The real question is…is Marty cup-motivated, or money-motivated?  And listen, either is fine.  He wants to get paid to work just like everyone else in the world.  We’ve detailed it thoroughly that he owes $500,000 every year until 2020 in alimony payments to his ex-wife.  Forget personal opinions on that matter, it’s just a fact.

My theory is this…if he was offered $2+ mill to be backup and start 25 games in NJ, would he take that as opposed to playing 35-40 games somewhere else and maybe only making $1 million?  Does that idea look great on paper?  No, not really.  However, it’s a small price to keep a legend’s legacy intact.

1 Comment

  1. Seahawk50

    In my opinion it’s time to let him go offering him any contract is a bad idea and a promise that he will only play a small role in the offseason will only become a huge problem in season…it’s time to let him go if he wants to play I’m sure there will be a team that will offer him a contract but don’t think it will be a Chicago or Pitt or teams in the hunt most likely will be teams that are struggling with attendance or a team that needs to get over the minimum cap so look for the panthers or teams in that range and will he really want to do that

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