Martin’s Numbers: Paul Martin had 2 goals and 9 assists in the 22 games that he played this season. He only made one trip to the penalty box, a hooking minor against the Leafs on March 18th. In the series against the Flyers, Martin was kept off the scoresheet.
My Thoughts: It was a tough year for Paul Martin only because of an injury that seemed to take a very long time to heal. He was injured on Oct. 24 in Pittsburgh when he was hit by a shot from Penguins forward Bill Guerin. He had hoped to be back in action 4-6 weeks later, but due to a setback, he required surgery on Dec. 22 in which he had a bone graft and a titanium plate was inserted in his left forearm. The setback kept Martin out of the lineup until after the Olympics and forced Martin to give up his spot on Team USA. When Martin was in the lineup, he played like our #1 defenseman should play. In his first game back he recorded a goal and an assist.
Martin’s Future: He’s an Unrestricted Free Agent on July 1st and say what you will about how important it is for Lou to sign Ilya Kovalchuk to the Devils but the Devils, who still haven’t replaced Scott Niedermayer, Scott Stevens or Brian Rafalski can’t afford to let Martin go. Martin is the Devils best player on the backline and if this team is going to be successful moving forward, he’s a piece that MUST remain.