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Why Jakob Chychrun to the Boston Bruins Makes Sense

(Jakob Chychrun Celebrtates a Goal/Getty Images)

By: Mike Sullivan | Follow Me On Twitter: @_MikeSullivan

As the 2022-2023 NHL Trade Deadline quickly approaches, many wonder what the best team in the National Hockey League is planning to do to solidify themselves as the top dog even more. Will they add depth? Will they add a top-six forward? Will they target a top-four defenseman? No one outside of Cam Neely, Don Sweeney, and the rest of the Boston Bruins’ front office knows.

In weeks prior, I favored adding depth so as not to ruffle the feathers of the everyday lineup that has been setting records all season long. However, the more I thought about it, the more I believed that was a disservice to veteran guys in the lineup, such as Patrice Bergeron, David Krejci, and Brad Marchand, who are at the tail ends of their careers. Krejci and Bergeron more than Marchand, but the sentiment remains the same. Do as much as you reasonably can to give these guys the best chance possible at one last Stanley Cup.

Zdeno Chara speaks on Patrice Bergeron’s leadership qualities (Spittin Chiclets)

When looking at this team, it’s difficult to determine what needs to be upgraded. The offensive firepower of the Boston Bruins is unmatched in the entire league. Having a goal differential of +81, while the second closest team in goal differential (Dallas Stars) is at a goal differential of +44. If the team is looking to add a top-six forward, I’m not sure how much that changes things for this team. Sure, the more options for scoring, the better, but when you have the 2010 first overall selection, former MVP of the league, Taylor Hall, playing third-line minutes and producing at a steady clip, I don’t think the offense is your number one priority to add at the deadline. You already have plenty of depth in that category with guys like Marc McLaughlin, Chris Wagner, and Jakub Lauko. Although, Lauko could be moved at the deadline.

Goaltending-wise, you have absolutely no issues. Linus Ullmark is having a career season, arguably one of the best seasons by a goalie of all time if he continues his play through the rest of the season, and you have a rising star backup goalie in Jeremy Swayman, who has picked up his play since struggling in the beginning. You also have a hot hand in Brandon Bussi right now, who’s lighting it up in Providence. He sports a 14-2-5 record with a 2.19 goals-against average and a .934 save percentage. No need to acquire goaltending come March third.

Recap of the Boston Bruins first half (The Locker Room/YouTube)

Defensively, the Bruins could use a little help. Not saying that there are weak spots in the teams’ top six at the moment, but you have some issues that could require attention—for instance, the injury-riddled Brandon Carlo. Carlo is almost guaranteed to get hurt at some point in the playoff run, and you can’t afford to miss him for an extended period when the playoffs start. Every game matters.

While looking at this defensive unit, it’s fair to covet a top-four, left-shot defenseman to replace someone like Matt Grzelcyck. A player that piques my interest and should peak yours is 24-year-old Arizona Coyote, Jakob Chychrun.

Jakob Chychrun highlights (Sports Montage/YouTube)

Jakob Chychrun is a bonafide top-four, maybe top-two defenseman already in the league, and he’s only 24 years old. He carries a salary cap hit of $4.6 million through the 2024-2025 season. Like Hampus Lindholm, Chychrun has been playing in a franchise that lacks the winning culture that a player like him deserves and would thrive in. Boston is that destination.

According to Darren Dreger of TSN, he has reported that Arizona would want a first-round pick, a premium young player, and would be willing to take back a contract. Ahem, front office, make this happen. A top defensive prospect Mason Lohrei has been projected to become a top defenseman in the NHL. Why keep Lohrei based on potential when you can trade him for an established top defenseman in the league? Also, the first-round pick would be no big deal to give up, as it will be a high pick anyways. You would likely lose Matt Grzelcyk in the trade as well. The fact that Arizona would be willing to take on a contract plays in Boston’s favor, as guys like Craig Smith and Mike Reilly are handicapping this team’s salary cap. Make this trade happen now.

A top-three defensive unit consisting of Charlie McAvoy, Hampus Lindholm, and Jakob Chychrun would be deadly for years to come. If this trade were to happen, the Boston Bruins would have the best defensive unit in the NHL by far, and that’s a scary thing to add to a team with a goalie in Linus Ullmark, who’s already having a historic year himself.

1 Comment

  1. Maj

    I’d rather have Matthias Ekholm. The cost would be about the same.

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