It seems to be a forgone conclusion that New Jersey Devils star forward Taylor Hall will be traded well before the 2019 - 2020 National Hockey League regular season has come to an end. For quite some time now all signs have pointed to the fact that Hall does not wish to remain a New Jersey Devil and this week that talk really heated up when it was reported that the Devils were finally starting to work on a trade involving the former Hart Memorial Trophy winner.
Of course fans in New Jersey are still holding out hope that the talented winger will have a change of heart and sign a new long term contract extension with the Devils, but Hall may have completely squashed those hopes on Saturday. Reports were flying in fast on Saturday regarding the fact that Devils general manager Ray Shero was finally listening to trade calls for Hall and as you would expect the media was quick to pounce on that news and get Hall's take on the matter. Although Hall could have chosen to downplay the trade talk he instead made a very strong statement to reporters, one that indicated he would no longer be fielding any trade related questions for the foreseeable future. It started when Hall bristled at the fact that he was asked if he was seeking a trade out of New Jersey.
“I’ll let my agent speak but I have not asked for a trade,” he said as per NorthJersey.com. “I don’t know what gets out there sometimes.”
Hall may not have asked Ray Shero or the Devils to trade him, but the fact that he has made it very clear that he intends to play for a winning team will have the same impact. Hall appears to have no intention of signing a long term deal with the Devils and as a team that already has very little hope of making the playoffs the Devils have their hands tied. There's simply no way that general manager Ray Shero will allow Hall to walk away as a unrestricted free agent for nothing in return, and Hall knows that. Following the question regarding a trade demand Hall made it clear he wanted all future questions on this matter to be handled by either Shero himself, or his agent Darren Ferris.
“I’m going to leave all of my contract talks to Ray and to (agent Darren Ferris) from now on,” Hall said. “I think it’s better if I leave that stuff to my agent and Ray.”
There have already been reports that have surfaced suggesting that Ferris has advised his client not to sign any kind of new deal during the 2019 - 2020 regular season, and as I stated above this would be tantamount to demanding or forcing a trade out of New Jersey at this stage of Hall's contract. Ray Shero met with Ferris in Calgary earlier this month but reports suggest that those talks have cooled off and that no progress was made when it comes to getting any closer to a new deal.