Originally posted in September, 2011.
Welcome to the rafters of Prudential Center, #27! On Friday December 16th, Scott Niedermayer’s #27 will join Scott Stevens’ #4 and Ken Daneyko’s #3 as the only numbers retired in franchise history. Scott was a key component of the New Jersey Devils’ success for over a decade, which culminated with four Stanley Cup Finals appearances (1995, 2000, 2001, 2003) and three Stanley Cup Championships (1995, 2000, 2003). Scott’s value to the franchise is undeniable and will never be forgotten.
Niedermayer will undoubtedly be remembered for his stellar skating and offensive production. In 2003-2004 Scott scored 14 goals and added 40 assists, for a total of a whopping 54 points. After the conclusion of the season, Scott was named the winner of the James Norris Memorial Trophy as Defenseman of the Year, becoming the first Devil to do so. Scott has won everything there is to win in hockey. In 1991 he won a gold medal at the World Junior Championships as a member of Team Canada. In 1992 he won the Memorial Cup as a member of the Kamloops Blazers, and was named MVP. He won the Stanley Cup with the Devils in 1995, 2000 and 2003. Scott also won the Stanley Cup in 2007 as a member of the Anaheim Ducks, and won the Conn Smythe trophy as playoff MVP. Scott won gold medals as a member of Team Canada in the 2002 and 2010 Olympics. He also was a member of the Team Canada squad that took gold in the 2004 World Championships, and a member of the 2004 World Cup winning Canada team. Forget “trophy case”, the Niedermayer household needs a trophy ROOM.
I am extremely excited about Scott’s jersey being retired, and will be in attendance at The Rock cheering loudly on the night of December 16. Please join me in applauding a true New Jersey Devils legend who has given so much to the organization.
What is your favorite Nieds’ moment?
Well after much discussion amongst fans and media folks alike, the Devils have finally hired a new coach. That man is… Peter DeBoer. DeBoer is the former coach of the Florida Panthers who was let go at the end of this past season. While his record may show why he was fired, that’s not the only reason. The Panthers are in the middle of a giant rebuilding process and that includes the coach. DeBoer took the Panthers to the brink of the playoffs since the 1999-2000 season with the 2nd highest point total in franchise history. The following years he did not make the playoffs and finished with worse and worse records. However, he did not have the players he had that first year and also, as mentioned before, was still coaching during a rebuilding time in Florida. That will obviously not be the case in his time in New Jersey.
I, for one, am excited on this hire. DeBoer had great success on the junior level winning a Memorial Cup and winning the OHL his last year coaching in juniors. He is also a disciple of former Devils coach Brent Sutter. Sutter hockey was some of the more aggressive and exciting the Devils had during his 2 year tenure. DeBoer has that same philosophy. He has experience coaching young kids, both in the junior level (obviously) and in Florida. With the new influx recently of the Baby Devs last year, this is a good man for the job. A new coach for the new NHL. Can’t wait to hear the opinions of the Devils Army on this move.