markstrom_edge will identify key EDGE stats for major offseason moves. Today, we look at goalie Jacob Markstrom after he was traded to the New Jersey Devils.

The New Jersey Devils finally have a workhorse goalie again, and Jacob Markstrom’s advanced metrics suggest he could not only get them back to the Stanley Cup Playoffs but also make them a tough out if they qualify.

Per NHL EDGE stats, Markstrom led the NHL in high-danger save percentage (.857) last season with the Calgary Flames and was tied for fifth in high-danger saves (359). He also allowed the eighth-most high-danger shots on goal (419) as the Flames missed the postseason.

The trade for Markstrom addresses the Devils’ glaring weakness and could make a huge difference for a strong possession team in New Jersey, which missed the postseason in 2023-24 despite ranking seventh in the NHL in shot attempts percentage (52.1). Markstrom, along with a healthy Dougie Hamilton (missed final 62 games of season after torn pectoral muscle), could quickly make the Devils a contender again.

New Jersey, which missed the playoffs by 10 points last season but qualified and won a round the previous season, has one of the most promising young cores in the League with forwards Jack Hughes, Nico Hischier, Jesper Bratt, Timo Meier, Dawson Mercer and defensemen Luke Hughes and Simon Nemec.

Markstrom, 34, has played at least 60 games three times in his NHL career and also played 59 games two seasons ago in 2022-23; the last Devils goalies with 60-plus appearances in a single season were Cory Schneider (60 in 2016-17; 69 in 2014-15) and the legendary Martin Brodeur (77 in 2009-10). Since 2017-18, the only goalies who have played more games than Markstrom (376) are Connor Hellebuyck (423) of the Winnipeg Jets and Andrei Vasilevskiy (387) of the Tampa Bay Lightning.

This past regular season, New Jersey had the third-worst team save percentage (.886) ahead of only the Ottawa Senators and Philadelphia Flyers (.884 each), using mostly goalies Vitek Vanecek (later traded to San Jose Sharks), Nico Daws and Akira Schmid (traded to Vegas Golden Knights this offseason) before acquiring Jake Allen (from Montreal Canadiens) and Kaapo Kahkonen (from Sharks) prior to the NHL Trade Deadline.

Markstrom’s best regular season came in 2021-22, when he had 37 wins in 63 games for the Flames, led the NHL in shutouts (nine) and was tied for third in save percentage (.922). He also brings playoff experience with 13 wins, a .911 save percentage and two shutouts in 26 career postseason games for the Flames and Vancouver Canucks.

New Jersey has renewed offensive upside under new coach Sheldon Keefe, especially with a healthy Hamilton, and Markstrom is likely to be the clear starter over Allen, who’s entering the final year of his contract. Markstrom should get much more goal support than he did in recent years with Calgary and has a realistic chance to eclipse 30 wins this upcoming season, finish as one of the 10 most efficient goalies in the NHL and lead the Devils back to the playoffs.


Full EDGE stats profile: Jacob Markstrom

Related Content