Restricted free agent Danton Heinen opts for salary arbitration

Danton Heinen of the Boston Bruins looks on during the second period of Game 5 of the Eastern Conference First Round against the Toronto Maple Leafs during the 2019 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at TD Garden on April 19, 2019 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
Danton Heinen of the Boston Bruins looks on during the second period of Game 5 of the Eastern Conference First Round against the Toronto Maple Leafs during the 2019 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at TD Garden on April 19, 2019 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

By Ty Anderson, 985TheSportsHub.com

Unable to come to terms on a new deal, restricted free agent Danton Heinen has elected to take the Bruins to salary arbitration.

The 24-year-old Heinen scored 11 goals and 34 points in 77 games last season, and contributed two goals and eight points in 24 games as a third-line fit with Charlie Coyle and Marcus Johansson throughout the B's run to the 2019 Stanley Cup Final. The year was a step back, at least offensively, from a 2017-18 campaign that saw him set career-highs in goals (16), assists (31), and points (47) in 77 games. Overall, Heinen has 27 goals and 81 points in 162 NHL games.

For those unfamiliar, this essentially means that the Bruins are turning to a neutral third party to determine Heinen's salary in 2019-20. Each side will present a number, the negotiator will make a decision, and the Bruins will have two days to decide whether or not they're going to pay that salary.

Though the sides are slated to go to arbitration, there's nothing that prevents the Bruins and Heinen from negotiating their own deal in the meantime. In fact, that seems likely given the sometimes contentious fallout of an arbitration hearing.

Defensemen Brandon Carlo and Charlie McAvoy are the other two big restricted free agent hurdles for the Bruins this summer. Neither Carlo nor McAvoy are eligible for salary arbitration like Heinen, and McAvoy cannot sign an offer sheet.

The Bruins currently have just over $10.1 million in cap space.

Ty Anderson is a writer and columnist for 985TheSportsHub.com. He has also been a member of the Boston Chapter of the Professional Hockey Writers' Association since 2013. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Yell at him on Twitter: @_TyAnderson.