Bruins Offseason Thread

jezza1918

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The bigger concern with Krecji is basically: is he done in the US. He's talked about wanting to go home to Czechia so his children learn the language and the culture while they're still young. I actually think that family discussion is what Sweeney was alluding to, as David and his wife and kids are probably still discussing the what/where/when of his post-NHL career.


Development in hockey is a bit different than other sports, in that getting more time at the AHL level can do a young player more good than a guy spending a bunch of time in AAA or a NBA guy spinning his wheels in the G-league. Vaak, Studnicka, and their other young guys who are eligible to go to Providence without waivers are better served getting lots of ice time in all situations than being forced into Bottom 6, last pairing roles that aren't necessarily what we even want out of them down the line. Given how bizarre the seasons have been the last two years, I don't really see a downside in letting those guys get back into a normal flow of things in an environment they succeed in so that they're ready to step into a bigger role in 2022-23 and beyond as some of these veterans start to trickle out. It'd be one thing if the last year+ had been normal and all those young guys had a chance to play normal seasons, but given how FUBAR it's been...it's probably not a bad thing for them.
Thanks for this, definitely helps mitigate some of my concern. Totally hadn't thought of what a strange developmental year it must have been.
 

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SoSH's Doug Neidermeyer
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With St. Louis acquiring Saad, I wonder if the Bruins would have any interest in Tarasenko as part of a DeBrusk swap.

Smith fits a lot better on the 3rd line. Hall and Tarasenko make a pretty nice set of wings on the second line. There’d have to be some maneuvering to get it to work from a cap perspective. But if the feeling is Krejci is unlikely to come back, Tarasenko would certainly help the offense.
 

cshea

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Yeah, there'd be a lot of cap gymnastics involved. The Bruins are dollar in-dollar out right now. So to accommodate Tarasenko's $7.5 million cap hit, they'd have to send out equal salary back. DeBruks, Moore and Wagner total $7.75 million so that would work, if STL was interested. However, the Bruins lose a lot of flexibility in this scenario. They'd be capped out with very little wiggle room to create space beyond waiving the depth guys. Tarasenko would also be taking up $7.5 million on next years cap, reducing their available room to $14 million to sign McAvoy, Bergeron and any other upgrades.

I guess STL could retain, but if they're taking dead money in Moore and Wagner I have a hard time seeing them retain as well.
 

BigMike

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Need to save their money to find a way to upgrade that first pairing LD. Still a HUGE negative right now.
 

veritas

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I don't think he's a huge negative. I do think his size will always be an issue and a limiting factor, just as was the case with Krug.
He's not a traditional shutdown defender but his defensive metrics constantly grade out as very good to excellent.

Throw away advanced fancy stats, they consistently give up a lot less goals when he's on the ice compared to when he's not on the ice. Being short is the only thing that is similar about Krug and Grz. They don't shelter him like they did Krug. He plays a lot of D-zone draws. The only limiting factor is that he doesn't kill penalties. Which isn't insignificant, but it's also very manageable. They can just not play him on the PK. (FWIW, in limited sample sizes, he's been perfectly fine on the PK)

I admit this is another small sample size, boosted by playing with the top line a lot. But his primary points per 60 minutes last year was off the charts good. Better than Dougie, Josi, Barrie and other elite defensemen.

At this point, if people want to shit on Grz, it's on them to back it up with some evidence. Cause he's been pretty great for a while.
 

burstnbloom

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He's not a traditional shutdown defender but his defensive metrics constantly grade out as very good to excellent.

Throw away advanced fancy stats, they consistently give up a lot less goals when he's on the ice compared to when he's not on the ice. Being short is the only thing that is similar about Krug and Grz. They don't shelter him like they did Krug. He plays a lot of D-zone draws. The only limiting factor is that he doesn't kill penalties. Which isn't insignificant, but it's also very manageable. They can just not play him on the PK. (FWIW, in limited sample sizes, he's been perfectly fine on the PK)

I admit this is another small sample size, boosted by playing with the top line a lot. But his primary points per 60 minutes last year was off the charts good. Better than Dougie, Josi, Barrie and other elite defensemen.

At this point, if people want to shit on Grz, it's on them to back it up with some evidence. Cause he's been pretty great for a while.
I'm not adding much so I;m sorry but this this is an excellent post and I agree with it very much.
 

kenneycb

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The evidence is his highlight reel against the Islanders. He was shit and was made to look like an AHL defenseman several times by the end of it. Could be for a variety of reasons, I imagine their physicality wasn’t helping, but that’s something I didn’t leave the season thinking (and still don’t) he could be a top pair guy. But if we’re throwing SSS to his benefit, we need to throw the SSS to his detriment as well.
 

cshea

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Trying to game out the rest of the offseason if Krejci returns.

B's are a million under the cap right now with 14F 8D and 1G. Adding Swayman and waiving Blidh and Kuhlman leaves them at $1.69 million in cap space with a full 23 man roster, 13F, 8D, 2G. This roster also doesn't include anyone who is waivers exempt, so removing anyone would require waivers.

Marchand - Bervgeron - Pastrnak
Hall - Coyle - Smith
DeBrusk - Haula - Foligno
Nosek - Frederic - Wagner
Lazar

Grzelyck - McAvoy
Reilly - Carlo
Forbort - Clifton
Zboril - Moore

Ullmark
Swayman

I'm just making guesses here, but Getzlaf came in at 1-year $4.5 million for Anaheim. Krejci has said it's not about the money and they could also use a bonus structure to keep the cap hit down for this year, but Krejci is better and younger than Getzlaf. So let's say, high end, Krejci gets about $5.5 million. That means to fit Krejci in, they would need to clear a minimum of $3.81. I figure in an ideal world they'd like to enter the year with ~$2 million in cap space. That gives them some wiggle room for call ups, accrues as they approach the deadline, and also leaves room for the potential in-season Rask addition. So in reality, they probably need to move $6 million if Krejci returns without taking anything back.

Jake makes $3.675 mill AAV so they'll need to trade him plus another piece just for Krejci. The obvious candidate is Moore at $2.75 mil AAV. Wagner feels useless at $1.35 mil AAV. Both have 2-years left. They probably have negative trade value though, so if they are attached to Jake it's going to substantially limit any return. I think we'd see DeBrusk, Moore, Wagner to XXX for Future Considerations with DeBrusk essentially being the sweetener in the deal for taking on Moore and Wags.

Which brings us to another option. Go full Tampa. I haven't worked it through, but I think they could get close enough to the cap to do the LTIR trick. We don't have any candidates, but Anaheim is sitting on Ryan Kesler's dead money. $6.875 million for one more year. That would give the Bruins a cap ceiling of $88.375 million, which is enough to basically keep everyone, DeBrusk included, and sign Krejci, Rask. It'd kinda be a true all-in.
 

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In light of the Krejci news, really glad the Bruins wasted a bunch of money to improve the bottom 6 and not get someone like Philip Danault for less than Foligno and Haula combined.
 

PedroSpecialK

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Yeah I'd have preferred it if the team stood pat and missed out on targets until Krejci made his decision 2 days after free agency started.

Danault put up one less goal than Coyle and 9 more assists in 3 additional games, with Coyle having an atrocious year by his standards - I don't know what you think he'd have brought to the table for an additional $5.5m, but I don't think it's a whole lot more than what they're gonna get out of Coyle.
 

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Yeah I'd have preferred it if the team stood pat and missed out on targets until Krejci made his decision 2 days after free agency started.

Danault put up one less goal than Coyle and 9 more assists in 3 additional games, with Coyle having an atrocious year by his standards - I don't know what you think he'd have brought to the table for an additional $5.5m, but I don't think it's a whole lot more than what they're gonna get out of Coyle.
You really think the team had zero idea he was going to make this decision?

Danault has been a Selke contender the last 3 seasons, and could take some of the defensive burden off the Bergeron line to hopefully open them up for more offense - which we'll now need from them.

This tweet sums it up perfectly.

View: https://twitter.com/bruins_stats/status/1421155245162369030?s=20
 

NYCSox

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Somewhere in one of these threads I threw out an idea of using Jake and Gryz and Wagner and maybe even Moore to Preds for Ekholm and a subsidized Johansen (and/or laundered through another club). Johansen brings a similar skill set as Krejci. And yes I know Gryz has his many fans here but I think Ekholm is an upgrade.
 

RedOctober3829

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Somewhere in one of these threads I threw out an idea of using Jake and Gryz and Wagner and maybe even Moore to Preds for Ekholm and a subsidized Johansen (and/or laundered through another club). Johansen brings a similar skill set as Krejci. And yes I know Gryz has his many fans here but I think Ekholm is an upgrade.
I’d be checking in to see what the price is on Eichel. You’d have to balance salaries now which is the difficult thing.
 

cshea

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FWIW, I think they knew this was the likely outcome heading into free agency. They aren't typically a go over the cap and figure it out later kind of front office. Adding 2 guys who can play wing and center was probably the flashing warning signs to everyone that Krejci was leaving. Then the "center by committee" talk in the press conference.

Kirk's reporting on this was pretty wild. He's not usually wrong like this.
 

PedroSpecialK

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You really think the team had zero idea he was going to make this decision?

Danault has been a Selke contender the last 3 seasons, and could take some of the defensive burden off the Bergeron line to hopefully open them up for more offense - which we'll now need from them.

This tweet sums it up perfectly.

View: https://twitter.com/bruins_stats/status/1421155245162369030?s=20
Say they knew Krejci was gone - which of the following contracts do you want them to take on from the UFA market?

Getzlaf - 1 year, $4.5m
Danaut - 6 years, $5.5m AAV
Granlund - 4 years, $5m AAV
Suter - 2 years, $3.25m AAV
Wennberg - 3 years, $4.5m AAV

Pius Suter is the only guy that I would've kicked the tires on of that list for those AAVs.

The door is still open to move DeBrusk / Studnicka / futures for a top-6 center. Sucks that it will take assets instead of just money to fill the hole, but I don't think they roll into the year with Coyle as 2C.
 

Salem's Lot

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I’d be checking in to see what the price is on Eichel. You’d have to balance salaries now which is the difficult thing.
We have to stop wasting bandwidth on Eichel around here. The Sabres are not trading Eichel to the Bruins. Especially since there are about 20 teams that can put together a better prospect package that they can. They’re sending him somewhere out of the division or he’s staying put.
 

NickEsasky

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The door is still open to move DeBrusk / Studnicka / futures for a top-6 center. Sucks that it will take assets instead of just money to fill the hole, but I don't think they roll into the year with Coyle as 2C.
No snark here but who do they even target? It's not really like teams around the league are flush with C's to deal for underperforming wings and picks.
 

IdiotKicker

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I think this should be the trigger that flips Pasta and Smith on RW. Hall-Coyle-Pasta should be able to do some real damage between puck possession and skill, and Marchand-Bergeron-Smith was very strong when we saw it for a few games this year. So I think you can make the top two lines more balanced and force teams to not just commit their best resources to stopping the Bergeron line at all costs.

The bottom 6 is deeper than it's been, but this does hurt in the middle. I'm not of the opinion they need to reach or try to do anything right now. Take a month or two, see what develops with the new guys they've brought in, and be ready to pick up a piece at the deadline if they're in contention. Well see if Studnicka has any kind of bounce-back year, because that would be a big help on the 3rd line, but that's a big hope to hang your hat on. I think you try to maximize the depth you have by spreading it amongst the top two lines a bit better, and see what your team looks like before deciding to spend additional assets.
 

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Say they knew Krejci was gone - which of the following contracts do you want them to take on from the UFA market?

Getzlaf - 1 year, $4.5m
Danaut - 6 years, $5.5m AAV
Granlund - 4 years, $5m AAV
Suter - 2 years, $3.25m AAV
Wennberg - 3 years, $4.5m AAV

Pius Suter is the only guy that I would've kicked the tires on of that list for those AAVs.

The door is still open to move DeBrusk / Studnicka / futures for a top-6 center. Sucks that it will take assets instead of just money to fill the hole, but I don't think they roll into the year with Coyle as 2C.
I've been saying since the middle of the playoffs I'd like Danault on the Bruins next season. 6 at 5.5 doesn't scare me away, especially with the lack of internal organizational replacements.

Marchy/Bergy/Pasta
Hall/Danault/Smith
DeBrusk/Coyle/Studnicka
Nosek/Lazar/Wagner

..looks a lot better to me than the current lineup.
 

PedroSpecialK

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An elite checking line forward is not the analog to Krejci IMO.

If you think Danault is worthwhile as a 2C at 6 years $5.5m AAV there’s not a whole lot that I can say that would convince you otherwise.
 

cshea

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Danault is a defensive first guy. I don't think he's a great fit as a Krejci replacement.

There were some rumors earlier in the summer about Christian Dvorak from Arizona. $4.45 million AAV for 4-more years was someone that interested the Bruins. I haven't really dug into Dvorak much but I think he's a more realistic target than Eichel or one of the big salary Nashville players. For Eichel and Johansen, I don't even know how the Bruins get to $10 million and $8 million in salary going out while keeping the package somewhat enticing for Buffalo/Nashville. I guess more in Buffalo's case since Eichel isn't an albatross while Johansen is.
 

PedroSpecialK

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Couturier and Kadri are the other two obvious 2C candidates via trade, both UFAs next summer, Philly is gonna suck shit and Colorado is up against it.
 

RIFan

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I think Krejci probably held the news at Sweeney’s request to not give any leverage to the FA’s they were negotiating with (other than Hall). It doesn’t seem his MO that would have withheld that from someone like Hall who was already on the team.
 

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Danault is a defensive first guy. I don't think he's a great fit as a Krejci replacement.

There were some rumors earlier in the summer about Christian Dvorak from Arizona. $4.45 million AAV for 4-more years was someone that interested the Bruins. I haven't really dug into Dvorak much but I think he's a more realistic target than Eichel or one of the big salary Nashville players. For Eichel and Johansen, I don't even know how the Bruins get to $10 million and $8 million in salary going out while keeping the package somewhat enticing for Buffalo/Nashville. I guess more in Buffalo's case since Eichel isn't an albatross while Johansen is.
You can work around it with Johansen with retention and laundering (see above). Depends on how badly Preds want to dump him and how likely they can retain Ekholm after this season.
 

PedroSpecialK

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No snark here but who do they even target? It's not really like teams around the league are flush with C's to deal for underperforming wings and picks.
Whoops missed this - but yeah, Kadri, Couturier, or even Zibanejad (HNNNNG) would be options as possible targets (rentals on the latter two)
 

cshea

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You can work around it with Johansen with retention and laundering (see above). Depends on how badly Preds want to dump him and how likely they can retain Ekholm after this season.
The other problem is Johansen just may not be any good anymore. Over the last 2 years his points per 60 is 1.49 which ranks 200 out of 313 qualifying forwards (I did 1000 minutes). It's an awfully big gamble to make, even with Johansen subsidized.

My guess, and I've been wrong about pretty much everything this off season, is they go into camp with what they've got.

Marchand - Bergeron - Pastrnak
Hall - Coyle - Smith
DeBrusk - Haula - Foligno
Nosek - Frederic - Wagner

Coyle gets first dibs. Studnicka (already getting "best shape of his life" reviews from Foxboro) gets a look too at some point, though not sure they'll drop him right into the 2nd line. They'll evaluate as the season goes and re-asses at the deadline. The UFA class next year is full of better C options than Johansen, headlined by Sasha Barkov. Behind him there's Hertl, Couturier, Kadri, Zibanejad, Malkin (lol) and a few others. Some of those players make shake loose at the deadline where they can make a play.

Problem is they will likely need a D at the deadline and a C and they only have the assets for 1.
 

Jordu

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I think you are right. The roster to start the season is set. Coyle is 28 — if he can get back somehow to being the player he was in Minnesota four or five years ago, that would still be short of Krejci but it’d be a big help. Time for Coyle to step up.

My guess is that we’ll see Coyle, Haula & Studnicka bounce up and down the C depth chart until Cassidy figures out what works and who can best make plays.
 

NYCSox

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The other problem is Johansen just may not be any good anymore. Over the last 2 years his points per 60 is 1.49 which ranks 200 out of 313 qualifying forwards (I did 1000 minutes). It's an awfully big gamble to make, even with Johansen subsidized.

My guess, and I've been wrong about pretty much everything this off season, is they go into camp with what they've got.

Marchand - Bergeron - Pastrnak
Hall - Coyle - Smith
DeBrusk - Haula - Foligno
Nosek - Frederic - Wagner

Coyle gets first dibs. Studnicka (already getting "best shape of his life" reviews from Foxboro) gets a look too at some point, though not sure they'll drop him right into the 2nd line. They'll evaluate as the season goes and re-asses at the deadline. The UFA class next year is full of better C options than Johansen, headlined by Sasha Barkov. Behind him there's Hertl, Couturier, Kadri, Zibanejad, Malkin (lol) and a few others. Some of those players make shake loose at the deadline where they can make a play.

Problem is they will likely need a D at the deadline and a C and they only have the assets for 1.
Oh it's clearly a gamble. But while he seems older he's only 28 so less likely to be cooked than say Duchene who is 30.
 

BigMike

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Oh it's clearly a gamble. But while he seems older he's only 28 so less likely to be cooked than say Duchene who is 30.
This has been a move I've been arguing for since the day the Bruins season ended. Not sure which I would go for between Duchene and Johansson, have to rely on your pro scouts, and may depend on which Nashville is more desperate to move

Unfortunately this is where some of the luxury items Sweeney signed really hurt them. Nick Foligno has been a really good 3rd line hockey player, but paying 3.8 million for a declining 3rd liner who will likely give you 25-30 points is going to really hurt now that they need to find a way to fill the 2nd line Center position
 

Zososoxfan

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I think this should be the trigger that flips Pasta and Smith on RW. Hall-Coyle-Pasta should be able to do some real damage between puck possession and skill, and Marchand-Bergeron-Smith was very strong when we saw it for a few games this year. So I think you can make the top two lines more balanced and force teams to not just commit their best resources to stopping the Bergeron line at all costs.

The bottom 6 is deeper than it's been, but this does hurt in the middle. I'm not of the opinion they need to reach or try to do anything right now. Take a month or two, see what develops with the new guys they've brought in, and be ready to pick up a piece at the deadline if they're in contention. Well see if Studnicka has any kind of bounce-back year, because that would be a big help on the 3rd line, but that's a big hope to hang your hat on. I think you try to maximize the depth you have by spreading it amongst the top two lines a bit better, and see what your team looks like before deciding to spend additional assets.
+1. Having that killer first line is a luxury when you have some threat on 2/3 lines, but now it's about putting wings around Coyle who can produce like a 2nd line. Smith is a fine third banana for Bergy-Marshy. The FO has shown that they like to make deals at the deadline, so now it's wait and see how the pieces fit together, measure the goalies, check health, and roll into the backend of '21-'22.
 

McDrew

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Adam McQuaid is assisting the team with their development camp this week. No "official" title yet, but seems like he's following in Chris Kelly's footsteps.
 

mwonow

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In the "I cried because I had no shoes until I met a man with no feet" column, I felt better about the Bs when I saw this Athletic piece about the Maple Leafs, counting on Ritchie as a first-line winger and also on Kase for meaningful minutes...and check out those D pairings! (actually, I don't recognize most of those guys' names)
 

burstnbloom

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In the "I cried because I had no shoes until I met a man with no feet" column, I felt better about the Bs when I saw this Athletic piece about the Maple Leafs, counting on Ritchie as a first-line winger and also on Kase for meaningful minutes...and check out those D pairings! (actually, I don't recognize most of those guys' names)
I read that yesterday. I'd be surprised if Keefe and Dubas are expecting Ritchie to play with Auston but maybe. Those two players are good enough to mask how bad Ritchie is though so maybe it'll work out. If I had two under 25 superstars, I'm not sure I'd strap a boat anchor to them though. Ritchie has just 6 xG and 4 primary A at even strength last year despite being deployed against 16th percentile competition and 60+% oZone starts. That player SUCKS. I'd be really surprised if Robertson doesn't make his way onto that line, an actually good player who can skate with Matthews and Marner. The leafs wing depth is poor, for sure.

I think their D is ok. Sandin is a bit overrated by leafs media/fans but when has a young guy ever been overrated in Toronto right? The rest of those guys are good to serviceable. Toronto will be a good team this year with depth problems because they pay 3 guys $10m plus.
 

mwonow

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I read that yesterday. I'd be surprised if Keefe and Dubas are expecting Ritchie to play with Auston but maybe. Those two players are good enough to mask how bad Ritchie is though so maybe it'll work out. If I had two under 25 superstars, I'm not sure I'd strap a boat anchor to them though. Ritchie has just 6 xG and 4 primary A at even strength last year despite being deployed against 16th percentile competition and 60+% oZone starts. That player SUCKS. I'd be really surprised if Robertson doesn't make his way onto that line, an actually good player who can skate with Matthews and Marner. The leafs wing depth is poor, for sure.

I think their D is ok. Sandin is a bit overrated by leafs media/fans but when has a young guy ever been overrated in Toronto right? The rest of those guys are good to serviceable. Toronto will be a good team this year with depth problems because they pay 3 guys $10m plus.
Yeah, the depth issue really leaps out when you look at the contract numbers on the chart. The Leafs are trying to be the Colts - stars and scrubs, no middle class - in a sport where there's no QB to be the pvot for 50% of the action...
 

cshea

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He's come out and said he'd love to play for the Bruins. He hasn't exactly made it a secret.

Unfortunately, I don't see a path towards making it happen unless the Sabres inexplicably let his no-trade kick in next July. Given the public battle being waged between him and the Sabres, I doubt he's even a Sabre by training camp.
 

burstnbloom

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He's come out and said he'd love to play for the Bruins. He hasn't exactly made it a secret.

Unfortunately, I don't see a path towards making it happen unless the Sabres inexplicably let his no-trade kick in next July. Given the public battle being waged between him and the Sabres, I doubt he's even a Sabre by training camp.
Ya there's no way. Jack will be a Bruin when he's 29, almost certainly, but I'd be shocked if it happened this year. The bruins have nothing to offer and no cap space.
 

Kenny F'ing Powers

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What are the chances the Caps are willing to move Kuznetsov to the Bruins? 2%? 0%?

MacLellan has openly mentioned trading him, the team is reportedly "tired of his antics", and his numbers have declined for the last few years. They only have 2m in cap space, and only have one goalie on the roster (a 25 year old with 35 starts and one dud in the playoffs). He seems like he'd be a great fit for that 2C spot.
 

cshea

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What are the chances the Caps are willing to move Kuznetsov to the Bruins? 2%? 0%?

MacLellan has openly mentioned trading him, the team is reportedly "tired of his antics", and his numbers have declined for the last few years. They only have 2m in cap space, and only have one goalie on the roster (a 25 year old with 35 starts and one dud in the playoffs). He seems like he'd be a great fit for that 2C spot.
I think the Caps would be 100% willing to trade him here. I think the Bruins would be roughly 0% interested though.

I think his baggage has piled up to the point where he's a hard pass for most teams. I'm sure someone will take a shot on him at a discount, but he's had a cocaine related suspension, two-covid list trips that were the result of some disciplinary/irresponsible actions.
 

nolasoxfan

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I think the Caps would be 100% willing to trade him here. I think the Bruins would be roughly 0% interested though.

I think his baggage has piled up to the point where he's a hard pass for most teams. I'm sure someone will take a shot on him at a discount, but he's had a cocaine related suspension, two-covid list trips that were the result of some disciplinary/irresponsible actions.
Yeah, F*** Kuznetsov. He’s not somebody that comes to mind when you hear ‘team player.’