By Ty Anderson, 985TheSportsHub.com
The Bruins spent their deadline adding while also clearing future money off their 2020 books, as the team traded $4.5 million of David Backes’ $6 million cap hit for Ondrej Kase and his $2.6 million cap hit last Friday, and concluded their deadline with a deal that swapped $2.8 million winger Danton Heinen for $1.499 million winger Nick Ritchie.
That’s sizable money freed up, and could have a big impact on the B’s ability to re-sign pending free agent Torey Krug, whose camp remains in touch with Bruins general manager Don Sweeney.
“We’ve continued to stay in communication with Torey,” Sweeney offered on Monday. “Whether we find one at an appropriate time between now and the end of the year, I don’t know yet. We’ll have talks, they’ve been very cordial, both sides sort of understand where they are and whether or not we can bridge something along those lines is to be determined.”
One of the top offensive defensemen in all of hockey, Krug has totaled at least 51 points in three straight seasons, and seems primed to make it four in a row later this year, with 42 points through 55 games this season. In fact, since the start of the 2016 season, Krug has tallied the sixth-most points among all NHL defensemen, with 205 points in 276 contests.
That figure makes Krug one of just seven defensemen to record at least 200 points over that span, putting him in elite company with Brent Burns, John Carlson, Victor Hedman, Erik Karlsson, Roman Josi, and Keith Yandle. (Not too shabby.)
Krug has been especially lethal on the power play, with 103 of those 205 points coming with the B’s on the man advantage, making him the third-most productive power-play d-man over that stretch, trailing only Hedman (105) and Carlson (107).
And with the Bruins having scored 231 power-play goals over that span, this means Krug has had a direct impact in 45 percent of their strikes on the man advantage. For a Boston power play ranked second in the NHL over that run, that’s gigantic.
These numbers will cost the Bruins a pretty penny on Krug’s next deal though, and that’s where every penny will count.
But like both parties have all season, Sweeney noted that there’s no timetable on getting a potential deal done.