Fire&Ice- The Devils have re-signed right wing Jordin Tootoo to a one-year contract.
The deal, which carries a salary of $825,000, was first reported by Renaud Lavoie of TVA Sports.
Tootoo was eligible to become an unrestricted free agent on July 1.
Tootoo, 32, had the final year of his contract bought out by Detroit after he spent most of last season in the AHL with Grand Rapids. After being invited to training camp with the Devils as an unsigned tryout, he made the team and signed a one-year contract for the league minimum of $550,000.
Tootoo made the most of his opportunity by putting up 10 goals, five assists and 72 penalty minutes in 68 games.
Such a 'Lou signing' that it almost brings a tear to my eye. Signing a guy that outperformed his contract to less than he is probably worth based off last year's production? And at a reasonable one year term at that? That's the Lou Lamoniello special. I mean, come on, did we think that Lou was just going to head to his Ivory Tower as president of the club without wheeling and dealing one last time? It's not in his blood. That's why we all love him. I wouldn't be surprised if he didn't start contract negotiations until after he announced Ray Shero as GM. Just had to scratch that itch one final time. I hope Lou doesn't develop a drug problem while he sits in his Oval Office as President repeating 'Status Quo' over and over. Who, in this world, doesn't have one vice? Lou's vice was the New Jersey Devils. Honestly, I hope he stays healthy. It's like when a grandparent dies and their significant other has health problems almost immediately after. Lou Lamoniello is married to this franchise. He's married to doing anything and everything to help them win. It's going to take a while for him to get used to being a supervisor of daily operations instead of being the person doing the daily operating.
Regardless, this a great signing. Well, in this case 'great' is a relative term, but I digress. Make a list of the Devils that outperformed their contracts last year. Cory Schneider, Damon Severson, Adam Larsson, Steve Bernier, and uhhhhhhh, yup, Jordin Tootoo. Did I cover all bases? I think I did. Sad, but true. Look at the stretch after the coaching change during the second half of the year where the Devils were, dare I say it, actually pretty hot. Who was one of the offensive catalysts playing on the first line? Yup, you guessed it, Tootoo. Now should he be playing first or second line minutes, and getting power play time? Absolute not, but that's more an indictment of his teammates than him. He did his job and did it well. He stepped up to the plate physically. His work ethic was never in question, and I know this may seem crazy to some, but he was a part of some of the Devils more aesthetically pleasing goals of the year. Never mind the fact that he is great teammate. Was there any other Devils nominated for a trophy (Masterdon) during last year's debacle of a season? Shit, he earned his spot based on his speed alone. It doesn't matter how good of a job Ray Shero does in his first offseason as GM. He won't find four lines of forwards more deserving of playing time than Tootoo without the use of prayer, a lamp (complete with genie), and a major miracle. You want to know how good Jordin Tootoo was last year? I was mad when he made the team. The fact that he was able to change my original opinion on him was a minor miracle in itself. I know, I know. You guys may not know this, but I am pretty hardheaded. Looks like Tootoo beat me over the head with his play so badly that I had no choice to become a fan. Now trade Gelinas for a forward prospect so Jordin can wear the #22 he so rightfully deserves. Deuces.