The Devils would be wise to do what they can to keep the valuable Minnesota-native in Newark, but there are a lot of offers that might entice the 27-year-old to leave. He turned a playoff-missing team into an Eastern Conference finalist and could be an asset to any NHL club with the cap to afford him.
Arguably one of the best American players since Chris Chelios, the first-year Devils captain led the New Jersey Devils to the 2012 Stanley Cup Finals.
While Parise’s consistent 60 points a season are a nice bonus to the team, his leadership skills make him an asset as a player. He managed to ground Russian sniper teammate Ilya Kovalchuk, whose superstar mentality arguably kept the Devils out of the 2011 playoffs.
The Devils’ playoff success and Parise’s instatement as captain was no coincidence—it was the result of newfound stellar leadership.
However, Parise’s contract is up and where he ends up for the 2013 season is precarious. It is uncertain whether the Devils will have enough money in their cap to hold on to their captain.
Knowing this, four other teams have smelled blood in the water and are swimming to Newark for a big free-agent pickup.