By: Joey Partridge | Follow Me On Twitter @joey_partridge
The 2020 NHL season has come and gone and what a wild one it was. First off, I would be wrong not to give major props to the league itself for finding a way to complete this season among the pandemic. What a job everyone did to bring this amazing sport back. With the Tampa Bay Lightning officially winning the Stanley Cup, the season has come to a close. It is time to turn the page to the offseason in preparation for the 2020-2021 season.
One of the biggest parts of any NHL offseason is the NHL Entry Draft. The draft is scheduled for the sixth and seventh of October. So, this begs the question, what do the Bruins do? The Bruins do not own their first-round pick anymore as that was sent to Anaheim and the trade deadline along with David Backes and prospect Axel Andersson for Ondrej Kase. They also don’t own their own fourth-round pick as that belongs to the New Jersey Devils when the Bruins acquired Marcus Johansson during the last trade deadline. So, entering the draft, the Bruins have five draft picks. With all the rumors circulating around Torey Krug, they could add another late-round pick in exchange for his negotiating rights, but as of now, they have the five picks.
Sounds like there has indeed been significant interest in teams trading for Torey Krug’s rights (@RearAdBsBlog on the case). My belief is last offer from #NHLBruins to Krug’s camp was 6 years x $6.5 million.
— Frank Seravalli (@frank_seravalli) September 28, 2020
It is hard to assess the Bruins situation on prospects and say who they need because they look solid in every area. Goaltending wise, they have prospects Dan Vladar, Jeremy Swayman, and Kyle Keyser. On the defensive side of things, they have Jeremy Lauzon, Jakub Zboril, and Urho Vaakanainen who all look like they can take that next step. Offensively, they have a decent amount including names such as John Beecher, Jack Studnicka, Zach Senyshyn, Trent Frederic, and the list goes on. So, what do they do? I believe that they enter the draft looking to add some goal-scoring talent to their prospect arsenal, with the occasional defensemen if the opportunity presents itself.
Here is something to keep in mind. The draft day brings a lot of trades. Whether that is teams exchanging picks or players, that remains to be seen. Zach Senyshyn and Jakub Zboril require waivers if they don’t make the NHL team. With how deep the Bruins are, that is a realistic situation. Does Don Sweeney look to trade one of these guys for draft picks to avoid that situation and lose them for potentially nothing? Senyshyn is a highly skilled goal scorer who has had a hard time in Providence standing out, but in his handful of games in Boston, he has looked good and as he could stay. As Don Sweeney says, you can never have too many defensemen and Zboril has had his hot streaks down in Providence. Keep in mind, both of these guys are young and it’s way too early to call them busts. To trade them would be trying to get value back to avoid a tough situation. I believe that both of these guys are good hockey players and can make impacts down the road.
One more thing to keep in mind is this. Both Zboril and Senyshyn were on the Bruins bubble roster, so to say they have no shot at making the team is wrong. With Krug most likely on his way out and a Chara return uncertain, Zboril is absolutely in play on that left side of the defense. Senyshyn brings goal-scoring to the table and with Jake Debrusk and Anders Bjork popping up in trade rumors, there may be a spot for him as well.
We have seen Sweeney pull some draft day magic before. The first draft he made those trades to get the Bruins three picks in a row by trading Milan Lucic and Dougie Hamilton. We have seen him draft defensive standout, Charlie McAvoy. With 2020 being a wild season, who knows if the draft will continue that trend. However, we look forward to welcoming some new and talented hockey players into the Bruins organization.