From the moment I sat down on Wednesday around 4pm last week I thought my updates from Bleacher Report, The Score were prank messages when I saw “New Jersey trades D, Adam Larsson for Edmonton Oilers F, Taylor Hall.” When I saw that NHL.com and NHL beat writer Tom Gulitti report the news I knew it was legit news.
The moment I heard the Taylor Hall trade break through from a Devils fan point of view we got our man that we sorely needed. But I feel this is the biggest domino that creates the ripple effect amongst the forwards, and defenders for this upcoming season. On the side of Peter Chiarelli’s mindset he could’ve squeezed Ray Shero for an early round pick as well with Larsson. But one of the things Oiler fans need to understand is Peter DeBoer had very little faith in Adam Larsson. But DeBoer loved playing his veterans to the point when John Hynes stepped in last season he started trusting Larsson not just for his defense but displayed a bit of offense.
From the 2011-2012 Devils roster you Oilers fans need to know that he played with Mark Fayne as a defender in New Jersey. On a personal note it will be super beneficial for Chiarelli to keep Mark Fayne on the team so that way Adam can earn the confidence from him and his new coaching staff. Once Larsson gets himself in stride in his prime he can be a fun player to watch in the Top 2 pairings.
Back to Taylor Hall. When it was the 2015 Trade Deadline evening I said on my friend Lou D’Elia’s Running With The Devils Podcast I mentioned along the lines of “we need guys like Taylor Hall” that can shoot and score. From all the times I have watched Taylor Hall play on tv I notice “speed, scoring, stealth, outstanding hockey IQ, great hands” but he also has been a favorite pick by Hockey Canada on their international teams.
As a fan of Ray Shero I feel he’s like a modern era of Lou Lamoriello where he doesn’t really talk to the press but he’ll allow media inside. On the Taylor Hall part Ray made it known he wanted a guy who is a natural scorer but was looking for a situation where a team was in a “sell off mode.” What I really like about this trade is that Adam Henrique also played on the same line with Taylor in Windsor, Ontario for the Windsor Spitfires wining a Memorial Cup together.
Back to this trade I really want to get a Taylor Hall shirt so badly because a guy of his caliber and his pedigree from the Ontario Hockey League, Hockey Canada, and his connection with Adam Henrique makes me even more thrilled to have a guy you can trust increasing a Devils team from 38-80 points between a bad to really good year. Via generalfanager.com
Hall adds a lot of depth to the Devils lineup because now there’s gonna be Henrique and Palmieri at the top where guys like Zacha (Top 9/Top6), Boucher, Blandisi, Miles Wood, Devante Smith-Pelly, Beau Bennett can fill out the 3rd and 4th lines but I want to see what happens with the first 3 lines. What good teams do is that they can roll 2 lines. Great teams can roll 3 to 4 lines a game that can produce at least 1 point per line.
When it comes to the defensive game Taylor Hall made it known that he wants to become a complete player, and become a very special asset that must never be traded again, and would generate a lot of positive media around the hockey hemisphere.
Now that The Devils have Taylor Hall I wouldn’t be surprised if Luke Gazdic is used to protect him from guys like Wayne Simmonds, McIlrath, Hartnell whom can be a threat to his health. But I like Gazdic because he’ll be the Taylor Hall bodyguard if not Devante Smith-Pelly would pound an opponent trying to get anywhere near Hall.
To be quite frank I can’t wait to see how the Metropolitan Division turns out but I am ready for puck drop. As I like to say now a days in New Jersey “In Ray We Trust” “Taylor Hall is the right call.”