I’m taking a short break from my favourite moments countdown in order to talk about something that has been on the minds of Devils fans for the entirety of the offseason thus far.
Adam Henrique, now approaching one month since the beginning of free agency, is still awaiting a new contract with the New Jersey Devils.
Several weeks ago, GM Lou Lamoriello and Henrique both reported that the deal was very close to being completed. However, there has been no news as of yet. The young center said today that there was “nothing new” in negotiations since the last time the two sides spoke.
It seems like there is no question that Henrique, who had 16 points in 42 games this past season, will be returning to the Devils. There were no indications made that would point to his signing with a different team. He expressed his excitement in the offseason moves made by his franchise, and stated that he is looking forward to beginning training camp.
“There’s no real deadline or anything,” said Henrique, also adding that he’s “not worried about it getting done…It’s a matter of time. We want to make sure we get the best deal for both sides.”
One reason he provides for the lengthy discussions is his involvement in a week long youth hockey camp in Windsor, Ontario where he played junior hockey. Ex-Spitfires teammate Harry Young and Devils draft pick is also taking part in hosting the camp. Because he has been so busy this past week, Henrique says that he has not been regularly checking with his agent.
Even with several new forwards that will be joining the Devils lineup, Henrique is definitely a priority for the team. Of course, he is held very high in the minds of fans since his playoff heroics in 2012. But he has also proved to be a great addition to the lineup, even when he doesn’t get points every night.
His versatility on the ice gives him potential to be the #2 center, and could earn him the #1 center spot one day, after the era of Travis Zajac is over. Demonstrating great leadership and passion, he will no doubt earn more respect from players, fans, and other organizations alike as his career moves forward.
Don’t get too worried, Devils fans – it looks like Adam Henrique will be here to stay for a few more seasons.