We all know Lou Lamoriello is not one to rush and make a hasty trade. If he was, he would have already matched the Rangers acquisition of Rick Nash with a move of his own. This last season was a prime example of his patience. A few weeks before the trade deadline, he acquired Alexei Ponikarovsky to add depth and provide versatility on the Devils third line. Soon after, he acquired Marek Zidlicky to fill a void at "offensive" defenseman.
These moves would not have been seen as "successes" if the Devils had failed to reach the playoffs or even make it out of the first round. That obviously didn't happen. Both were vital pieces in the run to the Cup Final, and, along with the timely call up of Stephen Gionta and midseason promotion of Steve Bernier, made Lou look like the genius we all know he is.
In my opinion, Lou has another masterpiece brewing, and it relates to our perceived lack of depth at top-six forward. Losing Parise left a big hole there, but we have the talent to make it up. The skill is not in the farm system, or in our lineup right now, but is playing somewhere in the league for another team. I don't know who this is, Lou probably doesn't know either.
And that's the beauty of it.
We have so much depth at defenseman right now that Lou can trade two of those pieces away and we could still have good defensive depth. Do I suggest a trade now? Of course not. That would be too hasty, and Lou is not about that. I would guess that Lou waits at least the first quarter of the season before he starts looking. The great thing about this approach is that allows Lou to assess. He can decide which defensemen are expendable, and which forward positions he thinks need to be boosted.
If there is no one available on the trade market, then Lou will wait. If I have learned anything as a Devils fan, the offseason champions (Rangers, Flyers) aren't often Stanley Cup winners.