By: Joey Partridge | Follow Me On Twitter @joey_partridge
The 2020 NHL Entry Draft has come and gone, and the offseason is in full swing. We have seen many trades be made across the league and different players opt for free agency. However, the Bruins haven’t done much except for drafting the players they did with their respective picks. You can check out the profiles on these players and get in depth opinions on them here.
So, this begs the question, what now? Oliver Ekman-Larsson and his agent have set a deadline of Friday, October 9th to be traded otherwise he is staying with the Arizona Coyotes, per Darren Dreger. Things recently have cooled down on that front so only time will tell if that deal gets done. However, there is a report that Don Sweeney and the Bruins are listening to a lot around the league.
Veteran NHL agent, on the Bruins: “Hear they are in on everything.”— Matt Porter (@mattyports) October 6, 2020
To me, that seems intriguing. The free agency window opens up on Friday and there just isn’t a scenario that I can see the Bruins being stagnant. They know they have holes to patch up to contend, and I think they will address those. With free agency opening up soon, the Bruins offered qualifying offers to Jake Debrusk, Matt Grzelyck, Zach Senyshyn, Karson Kuhlman, Jakub Zboril, and Peter Cehlarik, meaning they all will become restricted free agents and the Bruins can match any offer they receive. They did not offer qualifying offers to Brett Ritchie, Wiley Sherman, and Brendan Gaunce, so they will become unrestricted free agents and their time in the Bruins organization has come to an end.
Will the Bruins be active in free agency? I think the answer is yes. Chances are that Torey Krug is going somewhere else so there is a gaping hole on the left side that Sweeney has to fill. Chances are as well that Joakim Nordstrom won’t be returning so don’t be surprised to see a depth signing or two from the Bruins. However, we all know the Bruins biggest need and we have all harped on it for quite some time, secondary scoring. There are plenty of options out there for the Bruins, it is just up to Sweeney if he wants to pay the price tag.
Don Sweeney: “We’re not as good as we need to be. We’re going to explore everything.”— Conor Ryan (@ConorRyan_93) October 7, 2020
He reiterates that discussions involving a flat cap has dominated most conversations.
There are so many names and options being thrown around in the latest NHL rumors that it is hard to keep up. We have heard Taylor Hall’s name a ton, we have heard Ekman-Larsson’s name a ton, it goes on and on. One name that is interesting is Tyler Toffoli. The Bruins were attached to him at the trade deadline but just couldn’t get a deal done. Now, he is expected to hit unrestricted free agency with Vancouver unable to sign him. With already having been connected to Toffoli before, I do expect the Bruins to reach out and try to get a deal done.
Right now, it is almost impossible to answer that “What now?” question. There are so many uncertainties in the NHL right now with players and even next season. Sweeney has made it very clear that he is interested in upgrading this hockey club and is testing many different avenues to do that, so we can’t pinpoint what he is trying to do.
All I can say is buckle up Bruins fans. Free agency opens up on Friday and I would bet there will be new additions to the black and gold family. Who will those be? Only time will tell.
One last proposed move for off season for Bruins. First sign Debrusk then ink Cirelli of bolts to a 5 yr deal at Coyle’s cap number(5.25). Cirelli is an animal that thrives in playoff hockey. He is getting better every year. Let him play w krecji for year on right wing or center if someone gets hurt. Moves to krejci’s position at end of year or sooner if krecji gets hurt or is traded. With Cirelli, Coyle and Studnicka, the Bruins would be set at center for at least 5 years. Studnicka has to play wing until Bergy retires. For 2021 start the year with Smith or Cirelli on top 2 lines with Studnicka on 3rd line right wing. With Marchy back by start of season, Debrusk 2nd line left wing, Bjork can play left wing w Coyle and Studnicka. 4th line Kuraly centers Wagner and either Mckegg/Lindholm/Frederic/Blidh or switch them around and move Kuraly to 3rd line lw if Bjork fails.
Let the kids and Moore play and see what you have. Try Zobril on 3rd pair w Moore. Lauzon on 2nd w Carlo and grizz w macvoy on 1st pair. Clifton, vaakanen or sign Chara for minimum as 3rd line player/coach.