New Jersey Devils notes: On Ruff, Holtz, and Hughes' injury
There were plenty of noteworthy storylines on the opening day of training camp. Let's dive in.
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The New Jersey Devils officially opened training camp on Wednesday and there were no shortage of interesting storylines to come out Day 1.
Let’s take a closer look at a few of them as the Devils inch closer and closer to Monday’s preseason opener(s).
Lindy Ruff extension looms
Ruff is entering his last year under contract with the Devils. It sure sounds like he won’t be able to say that much longer.
Ruff and Tom Fitzgerald are working on an extension, which is not the least bit surprising to anyone who read the tea leaves of the summer.
When Andrew Brunette joined the Devils last year it was with eyes towards his next head coaching gig.
Either things wouldn’t go well in New Jersey and he’d step in for Lindy Ruff, or things *would* go well and – coupling that success with a strong body of work in Florida – he’d parlay that into a head coaching gig elsewhere.
That proved to be the case as Brunette departed the organization after just one season, taking a job as the head man for a retooling Predators team.
Brunette’s departure signified the Devils were more than happy with Ruff remaining as the head coach. And who can blame them?
Like any coach, Ruff has flaws and stubborn tendencies. But the good has far outweighed the bad over the last couple of years.
He lets his stars – all of whom have flourished – play freely with the puck. He doesn’t coach the offense out of guys. The results are there. The process is there. And, for the most part, he seems well liked by his players.
Ruff has earned the opportunity to lead the Devils as they try and transition from a hot young team on the rise to a perennial Stanley Cup contender.
Holtz is getting his shot
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