Devils snare Canucks G Schneider in draft deal
NEWARK, N.J. (AP) - The New Jersey Devils have acquired goalie Cory Schneider from the Vancouver Canucks for the ninth pick in the NHL draft.
The Canucks selected center Bo Horvat on Sunday at the Prudential Center.
Schneider seems in line to be the eventual successor to Martin Brodeur in net. Schneider was on the market once the Canucks were unable to dump high-priced goalie Roberto Luongo.
Brodeur, the NHL's career wins leader, and Johan Hedberg were the oldest goalie tandem in the league last season.
Schneider can now be groomed to take over for Brodeur, 41, one of the NHL's all-time great goalies. Brodeur developed a neck injury in February and missed almost a month. Johan Hedberg took over and the team went 3-8-2.
Brodeur has only ever played for New Jersey, and has led the Devils to three Stanley Cup titles (1995, 2000, 2003).
Vancouver general manager Mike Gillis has been wrestling with a tough goaltender situation for some time. Both Schneider and Luongo have the skill-sets to be full-time NHL starters, and have been so over their careers. But as the team moves forward into a new era with new coach John Tortorella behind the bench, it was Schneider who was moved out.
"Today's decision was made after a thorough review of our options,'' Gillis said, "and in the interest of improving this team long-term through the draft and development of players. We appreciate the high level of professionalism and conduct both Cory and Roberto have shown while continuing to help this team be competitive.
"I would like to personally thank Cory for his contributions to our team and wish him the very best and a bright future.''
Schneider is only 27, and fits right into New Jersey's long-term plans. He has two years left on a contract that counts $4 million against the salary cap.
The Devils, a year after winning the Eastern Conference, did not make the postseason this year. The Canucks lost in the first round.
Brodeur has won two Olympic gold medals, playing for Canada (2002 and 2010). He also won the Vezina Trophy, awarded to the league's top goaltender, four times, and will easily retire as the game's best stickhandling netminder.
New Jersey made him its first-round pick in 1990. He received a brief taste of the NHL in 1991, and was there to stay in 1993, leading the Devils to the Eastern Conference Finals in 1994.
He's still among the league's most popular players and recently won a fan vote to make the cover of the "NHL 14'' video game coming out in September by EA Sports. Brodeur has one year left on his deal.