The Devils announced today that the warmup jerseys worn by them and the Chicago Blackhawks back in the Devils’ season opener on October 15, 2021 will be auctioned off for a good cause.
In a press release put out by the team’s PR department, the New Jersey Devils announced that they are “launching the “Broadway/Hayesy” Jersey Auction, in memory of late NHL alum Jimmy Hayes, former Devil and Kevin’s brother.” Kevin Hayes currently plays with the Philadelphia Flyers – tomorrow’s opponent for the Devils.
The jerseys being auctioned off include the Devils’ jerseys with “BROADWAY 10” on the back and the Blackhawks’ jerseys with “HAYESY 39” on the back. Jimmy Hayes played for both clubs. “Broadway” and “Hayesy” were his nicknames in NHL locker rooms and the “10” and “39” were the numbers he wore for the Devils and Blackhawks, respectively.
“Funds raised from the auction will benebit the Hayes family and charities of their choosing” according to the press release.
The press release notes that during the season opener at Prudential Center, New Jersey “hosted Hayes’ family members during the game and honored him with a moment of silence prior to puck drop.”
The auction will last from Monday, December 13, 2021 (beginning at 12 noon ET) to Monday, December 27, 2021. The press release notes that each jersey’s auction time will end staggered beginning at 5 PM ET on December 27.
Hayes, who passed away tragically this past summer, played 334 NHL games over a career that lasted seven years. The press release says that he notched 54 goals and 55 assists for 109 points in the NHL.
The Dorchester, Massachusetts-native was drafted by the Toronto Maple Leafs in 2011, but never played a game for the franchise, as he was traved to the Blackhawks, where he began his career in 2011 and played to 2013. He also played for the Florida Panthers (2013 to 2015), the Boston Bruins (2015 to 2017) and finished his NHL career with the Devils in 2017-2018.
The Devils, as mentioned, will be traveling down the Turnpike to take on the Flyers tomorrow at 7 PM at the Wells Fargo Center. Jimmy’s brother, Kevin is currently a member of the Flyers.
In some other news pertaining to that game directly, the Devils have added another player to COVID Protocol.
Sam Kasan is reporting on the “Inside the Devils Blog” that defenseman Christian Jaros, who just made his return to the lineup following a stint on Injured Reserve, has been placed in COVID-19 Protocol. He joins forward Nico Hischier and defenseman Ryan Graves on the list.
According to Kasan, forward Yegor Sharangovich was also “held out of practice as a precaution. He is not currently in protocol.”
Devils head coach Lindy Ruff told Kasan “We’ve got two or three in (protocol) right now and hopefully it can end there. We don’t know what tomorrow brings either. We have a few guys that aren’t feeling well. Some of it is cold related. So, it’s hard to separate the two.”
And with those players now unavailable due to COVID Protocol, there opens up some opportunity for players down in Utica.
Kasan mentioned in a separate post on the Devils blog that New Jersey has recalled forward Marian Studenic and defenseman Kevin Bahl.
Studenic will be making his return to the NHL club, where he started the season after making the Devils out of training camp.
Kasan said that he got sent down to the Utica Comets and, in the 13 games he has played in the AHL since, he has five goals and five assists for ten points.
Kasan quoted Studenic as saying: “When I got sent down, I still had the mindset to keep going. Maybe I would have another opportunity. It’s here now so I’m happy about it.”
Kasan also pointed out that while with the Devils, he will likely play as “a penalty killer and fourth liner, though a fourth liner with a lot of speed.”
Contrast that with where he was with the Comets, as Kasan noted that in Utica “Studenic played a top-6 role for the Comets, which included power-play time and big minutes.”
The speed that Studenic brings should please his coach in New Jersey. Kasan quoted Ruff on Studenic as saying: “The one thing that we need is speed up front. It always helps our team, and he can bring that.”
As for Bahl, this will be the blue liner’s first call up to the NHL this season. He was assigned to Utica out of training camp.
Bahl admitted to Kasan that he did not have the best training camp.
“I don’t think in training camp I got to the level that I wanted to” he told the Devils writer.
Kasan said that he was sent to “Utica to work on many facets of his play.” Bahl “pointed to his positional play and retrieving pucks in the D zone as a few.”
Bahl continued to Kasan that the “biggest thing down there was development. I was watching video every day. It was a big factor for me to keep getting better. I’m definitely excited, it means a lot to get called up and it shows they have a lot of faith in me.”
Ruff told Kasan: “Kevin has got the range and the skating ability that a lot of guys don’t have. I felt he got off to a slow start at camp. He didn’t use his reach. I think his physicality could have been better. From what I’ve heard, that part of his game has really come around. It’s something he’s worked at.
“You have to give him credit. He’s worked hard at it. He’s going to get another opportunity,” Ruff concluded.
Kasan reminded readers that Bahl played in seven NHL games last season with the Devils. When he asked Bahl about that, Bahl said: “Last year was awesome. I got a feel for it. I know a bit more what to expect. I’m just excited to play.”
He also told Kasan, “The biggest thing is turning my preparation into confidence. How well I can prepare and how well I do things away from the rink. That will build my confidence being on the ice.”