Upon the draft lottery, the New Jersey Devils won the rights to the second overall pick. The Montreal Canadiens got to pick first and shocked the world to some degree when they took Slovakian winger Juraj Slafkovsky. Shane Wright was available for the taking. The Devils did not take Shane Wright, who fell to fourth overall to the Seattle Kraken. With the second overall pick in the 2022 NHL Draft, the Devils selected Slovakian Defenceman Simon Nemec.
The New Jersey Devils are getting an excellent hockey player. He was regarded as the best defenceman available in this draft. He had very good production in the leagues he played in. In the Slovakia pro league, in 39 games played, he scored one goal, 25 assists, and 26 points. He only tallied 19 points the year prior, and the year prior, only three. So the development for him has been there.
Simon Nemec should be a significant offensive-producing defenceman for the New Jersey Devils. The 6’0 190-pound defenceman uses his size and skill to generate his offense. As shown in the picture, drawing comparisons to Victor Hedman speaks volumes about the type of player he could be.
The Fit On The Devils Blue Line
The Devils drafted for need this year. With Juraj Slafkovsky taken right before them, heads turned differently. For the second year in a row, the Devils took the best defenseman available in the draft. Simon Nemec was a draft for need pick, as the Devils need help on the right side of the lineup. Now the right side of the defense is Dougie Hamilton, Damon Severson, and Simon Nemec.
The Devils are building a foundation for themselves. Like the past successful Devils teams, they are building the back end. The New Jersey Devils now have a defense group of Dougie Hamilton, Damon Severson, Jonas Siegenthaler, and Simon Nemec, and waiting in the pipeline is Michigan Wolverine Luke Hughes.
This is a massive day for Devils fans. Getting a good player can shape the back end for years to come. Just imagine Nemec and Hughes running the Devils’ power play together. Good times are coming, and this is only the beginning.