The 2009 off-season was one of upheaval for the New Jersey Devils. Despite claiming the Atlantic Division title and finishing third in the Eastern Conference, a veteran heavy Devils squad was upset in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. In early June of 2009, head coach Brent Sutter left the organization to return home to Alberta and coach the Calgary Flames.
While the New Jersey Devils are having a roller coaster season, their minor league affiliate, the Albany Devils, are the surprise team of the AHL. Part of the reason is the play from their rookie class, featuring some of the franchises top prospects, including Jon Merrill, Reid Boucher, and Stefan Matteau.
General Manager Lou Lamoriello has done a good job of restocking the lackluster New Jersey Devils farm system over the past six years. The junior and college ranks have produced talented prospects of all skill levels that fit the Devils mold. Now their minor league affiliate is reaping the benefits of this youth movement.
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