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Brodeur expects nerves when Devils retire his jersey

by Mike G. Morreale /

Martin Brodeur said emotions will certainly be high when he steps on the ice to have his jersey No. 30 retired by the New Jersey Devils at Prudential Center on Feb. 9.

"It'll probably be the first time I'll be on that ice and be that nervous," Brodeur told Matt Loughlin of WFAN Sports Radio on Tuesday. "I've never gotten nervous when I played, but this is a little out of my comfort zone so it'll be a different nervousness. It'll be emotional, there's no doubt about that."

Brodeur led the Devils to three Stanley Cup championships while setting a multitude of NHL records for a goaltender including wins and shutouts. There's no question Brodeur, now assistant general manager for the St. Louis Blues, wants to make sure he thanks and pays tribute to all who helped him during his 21 seasons with the Devils.

"The main thing for me [during my speech] will be to try and reminisce about what we did as a franchise while I was there," Brodeur said. "What I've accomplished, but also about the teams we had and the great teammates and coaches who were there for me. I want to take that time and think back, go through it, and hopefully it'll come out the right way."

Brodeur, 43, becomes the fourth Devils player to have his number retired. He joins defensemen Scott Stevens (No. 4 retired on Feb. 3, 2006), Ken Daneyko (No. 3, March 24, 2006), and Scott Niedermayer (No. 27, Dec. 16, 2011), fellow three-time Cup champions in New Jersey.

He is the first of the group, however, to get his own statue outside Prudential Center. Created by architect Jon Krawczyk, it will also be unveiled on his big night.

"I was really surprised when they came up with the idea of having a statue made in my honor; it's something I never thought about," Brodeur said. "The process with [Krawczyk] has been great. We came up with something that would, first, look like me and, second, would symbolize some of the things I've done in my career.

"We came up with a salute type of pose; just the way in which I always used to salute the fans after getting star of the game or after setting a record. I felt that was the right thing to do."

The process of arranging a day to celebrate Brodeur's illustrious 21 seasons with the Devils was in the works for quite some time. Lou Lamoriello, who was Devils GM before accepting the same position with the Toronto Maple Leafs on July 23, made public before his departure from the Devils that Brodeur would get his due at the appropriate time.

Lamoriello was the architect of the three Stanley Cup championships with Brodeur during his 28-year tenure as president/GM in New Jersey.

Brodeur was asked who he made certain would join him on his special night.

"I'm getting the guest list together in order for people to get into town," Brodeur said. "I definitely wanted my family and kids to be there. I know the players I played with will be there.

"I would love for David Clarkson to come, but he's busy with the Columbus Blue Jackets these days. I'm also hoping Lou will make it."

Ray Shero replaced Lamoriello as GM on May 4.

Brodeur led the NHL in wins nine times, and finished in the top five on five other occasions. The 10-time all-star and four-time Vezina Trophy winner holds NHL goaltending records for wins (691), shutouts (125), games played (1,266) and minutes played (74,439). He also won 40-or-more games eight times in his career. In the Stanley Cup Playoffs, Brodeur ranks first in starts (204) and shutouts (24) and second in wins (113).


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