The New Jersey Devils are amongst the free-agency winners

The New Jersey Devils are amongst the free-agency winners early on.
2024 Upper Deck NHL Draft, Rounds 2-7
2024 Upper Deck NHL Draft, Rounds 2-7 / Ethan Miller/GettyImages

The first day of NHL free agency started with the New Jersey Devils being in on everyone available. The top two fish were Steven Stamkos and Jonathan Marchessault who both ended up with the Nashville Predators.

That doesn't mean that the Devils completely missed out. Of course, they aren't getting a high-end offensive forward like that but they did sign Stefan Noesan who will add a great boost to their bottom six.

Noesen brings the aforementioned depth on both offense and defense. He had 14 goals and 23 assists for 37 points in 81 games played with the Carolina Hurricanes which would be great production from a third-line winger.

However, the big catches of the day for New Jersey came on defense. The big one is Brett Pesce who is a very good defensive defenseman. He moves the puck well and breaks down passing lanes well. With a two-way or offensive-minded partner, he will thrive.

The forwards on the Devils will also love having him around as well. It is one more defenseman on the team that can move the puck well while also being stout defensively.

The New Jersey Devils made a few very smart moves on Monday

He wasn't the only defenseman brought in either. They also added Brendan Dillon who is a solid defensive defenseman as well. Dillon will be perfect in a bottom-pair role.

Neither of them provides much offensive production but they have Luke Hughes, Dougie Hamilton, and Simon Nemec for that. Jonas Siegenthaler and Johnathan Kavacevic are there as the sixth and seventh defensemen as well.

Even though they didn't get any of the huge names, that doesn't mean that they didn't have a winning first day of free agency. They addressed their biggest need coming into the day which was depth on defense.

They also added Jacob Markstrom via a trade earlier in the off-season which makes these defensive upgrades make even more sense.

Now, New Jersey needs to put it all together. They already had tons of offense but now their defensive unit is much-improved.

They may or may not be done in free agency or trades. Don't be surprised if they add one more top-six forward to make sure their group is how they want it for opening night.