The New Jersey Devils could be interested in Gionta
According to a report from Rich Chere of The Star-Ledger the New Jersey Devils may be interested in bringing back former Devil Brian Gionta.
“…if general manager Lou Lamoriello remains true to form, he just might inquire about bringing right-winger Brian Gionta back to New Jersey.”
It is possible that if Gionta and the Canadiens cannot come to an agreement, the only other team Gionta would go to is most likely New Jersey. Chere thinks his brother who is currently playing on the Devils could lure him to New Jersey.
“If the Devils are interested, they have the perfect recruiter in Gionta’s younger brother, Stephen, who would be willing to get into Brian’s ear.”
There were rumors earlier this year before trade deadline that Gionta and the Habs have begun contract negotiations, but Gionta’s agent said they haven’t discussed anything yet. The plan for Gionta and his agent was to finish the season and leave the negotiations for the off-season.
It’s quite evident that Gionta’s play has regressed as he ages but he is still a very serviceable 3rd line winger who can still play the penalty kill effectively while pitching in offensively. Gionta, 35, has registered 40 points (18 goals, 22 assists) this season and will certainly have to take a pay-cut from his current $5 million dollar salary if he were to continue playing with the Montreal Canadiens.
Initial indications suggest a 1-2 year deal at around $3-4 millon would be the ideal range for Gionta’s new contract come July 1st.