Devils general manager Lou Lamoriello sounded very optimistic today that he will soon be able to lock up goaltender Cory Schneider to a contract extension. Schneider, 28, would be eligible to become an unrestricted free agent next summer.

“It’s a work in progress and we’re getting closer and closer,” Lamoriello said. “Hopefully, we’ll have that done in the very near future.”

The Devils have fully committed to Schneider as their No. 1 goaltender going forward now with Martin Brodeur not planning to return (he has yet to sign with another team and will take his time doing so) and rookie Keith Kinkaid and Scott Clemmensen (signed Tuesday to a one-year, two-way deal) set up to compete for the backup job in training camp.

Lamoriello said heading into the off-season that signing Schneider to an extension was a “priority” and he’s been working on it with Schneider’s agent, Mike Liut, for several weeks. Schneider was not officially allowe