Well, this is certainly shocking news to us on opening night of the NHL season. Rich Chere reports that Lou Lamoriello and the New Jersey Devils have cut future Hall of Famer Brendan Shanahan. This comes after earlier reports from Gulitti that Shanahan was missing at practice today.
Shanahan originally signed to a $1 Million contract with New Jersey over the summer. His cap hit remains on the books until further notice, or until Shanny finds another team.
Lamoriello had this to say:
"Over the past couple of days Jacques (Lemaire) and I have had conversations. The unexpected has transpired," Lamoriello said. "It's not that Brendan cannot play. It's that these (young) players have become something special at this time."
Well, that's all well and good, here's Shanahan's statement:
"I have not decided to continue with the New Jersey Devils for my 22nd NHL season," Shanahan's statement read. "When I signed this past summer, Lou Lamoriello, Jacques Lemaire and I agreed that if we were unable to find a suitable fit in which I would be able to compete and contribute at the level I expect from myself, then I would simply step aside.
"I have great respect for Lou, Jacques and the entire Devils' organization. This decision is both mutual and amicable. I am planning to spend the next couple of weeks with my family to reflect on and evaluate my plans for the future. Most importantly, I would like to thank my former teammates and wish them the best of luck this season."
Well, you can't say that the Devils don't have a flair for the dramatic. I've heard rumors that Shanny will retire. There's also conjecture that he will be traded, find another team, or even come back later in the season, though that seems unlikely. For now, we thank Shanny for wanting to come back and give it another try, being a good veteran presence in the locker room and for reminding us that there will be another former Devil in Hockey's Hall of Fame in a few years. For now, let's see how this so-called youth movement works out for the Devils. The fact is, there needs to be more offense from someone. Shanahan felt that couldn't be him, so maybe it'll come from somewhere else.