The New Jersey Devils are a professional ice hockey team based in Newark, New Jersey, United States. They are members of the Atlantic Division, where they are the reigning Eastern Conference champions of the National Hockey League (NHL). The club was founded in Kansas City, Missouri as the Kansas City Scouts in 1974, moved to Denver, Colorado as the Colorado Rockies after only two seasons, and then settled in New Jersey in 1982.
The franchise had been poor to mediocre in the six years before moving to New Jersey. The pattern continued in its first five years in New Jersey; they failed to make the playoffs and never finished higher than fifth in their division. However, under current president and general manager Lou Lamoriello, the Devils have made the playoffs all but three times between 1988 and 2012, including thirteen berths in a row from 1997 to 2010. They finished with a winning record every year from 1992–93 to 2009–10, tied with the Detroit Red Wings as the longest such streak of any team in America's four major sports. They have qualified for five Stanley Cup Finals in their history, winning in 1994–95, 1999–00 and 2002–03. For their first 25 seasons in New Jersey, the Devils were based in East Rutherford and played their home games at Brendan Byrne Arena/Continental Airlines Arena. Prior to the 2007–08 season, the Devils relocated to Newark to play their home games at the newly-constructed Prudential Center.
The Devils were known for their defensive-oriented style of play throughout their years of Cup contention, but have recently moved towards a more offensive style of play. The Devils have a rivalry with their cross-Hudson River neighbor, the New York Rangers, as well as a rivalry with the Philadelphia Flyers. Since the division's creation in 1993, the Devils have won the Atlantic Division season title nine times, most recently in the 2009–10 season.
Since the departure of the Nets to Brooklyn, the Devils are the only major professional sports team to explicitly brand itself as a New Jersey franchise; although the New York Giants, New York Jets, and New York Red Bulls are headquartered, train, and play in New Jersey, these teams still brand themselves as being from New York City.
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... These are the salaries for the New Jersey Devils ... Year Team payroll % change Median salary Top paid player(s) Highest salary 1998–99 $27,700,000 1999–2000 $31,300,000 13.00% 2000–01 $39,151,118 25.08% $800,000 Alexander Mogilny $5,200,000 2001–02 $43,118,026 10.13% $1,050,000 Joe Nieuwendyk $5,500,000 2002–03 $56,072,626 30.04% $1,350,000 Martin Brodeur Scott Stevens $6,891,103 2003–04 $48,931,658 -12.74% $1,425,000 Scott Stevens $6,916,747 2005–06 $44,895,949 -8.25% $1,000,000 Martin Brodeur $5,237,238 2006–07 $49,608,766 10.50% $984,200 Patrik Elias $7,500,000 2007–08 $47,622,511 -4.00% $1,400,000 Patrik Elias $7,500,000 ...
... On July 17, 2012, the Devils announced former defenseman and team captain Scott Stevens will return to the team as an assistant coach ...