NEWARK, N.J. – With another top scorer leaving the New Jersey Devils, the door to the NHL is once again wide open for Stefan Matteau.
Matteau briefly made the jump from junior hockey to the big league last season, earning a spot on the roster coming out of training camp. The run lasted 17 games and resulted in one goal before the-then 18-year-old was sent back to his junior team.
The Devils hoped that Matteau could somehow take up some of the goal-scoring slack after the loss of Zach Parise to free agency. But it never panned out.
But heading into this season, he has a second chance. After all, New Jersey's need for scorers is greater with star forward Ilya Kovalchuk's decision to return to Russia.
This time, Matteau believes he is ready.