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Devils GM open to trading 10th pick, wants goalie

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New Jersey Devils general manager Tom Fitzgerald isn't opposed to parting with his first-round draft pick later this month - as long as the return is hefty enough.

"If we feel it helps us now and in the foreseeable future, then, yes, I'm listening," Fitzgerald told's Mike G. Morreale on Monday. "I haven't gotten anything yet, but the more I talk to teams, I say 'Listen, I'm open to moving No. 10, but it's going to have to be something (significant).'"

The Devils have six picks in the draft, including a pair of third-rounders and two more in the fifth, but they sent their second-rounder to the San Jose Sharks as part of the Timo Meier trade in February 2023. New Jersey is also without a fourth-rounder and a seventh-rounder this year, thanks to the Curtis Lazar and Meier deals, respectively.

The Devils missed the playoffs this season following a trip to the second round in 2023, but Fitzgerald explained that their approach has changed.

"We're in a position now versus two years ago when we drafted (defenseman) Simon Nemec (second overall), where if we can find the right piece to help us get to where we want to go today, tomorrow and wherever the controllable future is for that player, great," the GM said. "That's the mindset versus 'Great, we have a top-10 pick and this kid is going to be fantastic when he's 25 years old'."

It's no secret that the Devils need a goaltending upgrade and have been exploring ways to do so. They reportedly tried to acquire Jacob Markstrom from the Calgary Flames before this season's trade deadline and, shortly thereafter, it was reported that New Jersey planned to pursue the netminder as well as Juuse Saros of the Nashville Predators this summer.

"I'm in the goalie market talking to teams, but there's a 'but' and the 'but' is how do we want to build our team?" Fitzgerald said. "We'd like to add up front, we'd like to add on the back end, so what are those pieces going to cost us. With the goaltending, what's that going to cost us?

"Does the No. 10 pick get you that type of player that you can add to the group? It's easy to say, 'Go get so-and-so and then you build from there.' But there are some guys who have different contracts, so how are those players going to re-price at? There's a lot to it, but, yes, the focus is on finding that goaltender."

The Devils' .885 team save percentage was the NHL's third-worst in the regular season. Jake Allen, who they landed in a deadline-day trade with the Montreal Canadiens, is New Jersey's only netminder with an NHL contract next season.

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