You can’t read too much into development camp, but it seems Pavel Zacha couldn’t have made a better impression on Devils GM Ray Shero.
“I thought he was fantastic,” Shero told the Bergen Record. “That was the feedback we gave him today. I think that was from the entire staff. Very professional, very mature. He roomed with Damon Severson this week and they were really good together, but I think Pavel passed that on as well in terms of getting to know everybody here whether it was a draft pick or a tryout or just really dealing with people. So, I thought he did a real good job on and off the ice.”
Zacha also impressed John Hynes with his work ethic. The bench boss also noted that he’s “very coachable.”
The 18-year-old forward was taken with the sixth overall pick in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft. Although expectations always have to be tempered when talking about a player that young, the hope is that he’ll eventually play a big role on a Devils’ team that has ranked in the bottom-five in goals per game for the last three seasons.
He might even make the team out of training camp, but for that to even be possible he needs to sign an entry-level contract in the not too distant future. That’s because he’s tied to the Czech Republic squad Liberec and there’s a Aug. 18 deadline to get players that are under contract in Europe signed in order for them to be eligible to play in the NHL next season.
As it is the Devils will have to pay a $100,000 transfer fee because they didn’t get his deal done before the first deadline on July 15.
That being said, Shero said there haven’t been any “red flags” in the contract talks.