It’s been nearly three months since Jake DeBrusk’s trade request went public.
The 25-year-old wing has done his part to remain professional and productive while the Bruins attempt to accommodate his request (while refusing to sell for under what they believe to be market value), but has stayed silent. Prior to last night’s two-goal outburst, attempts to talk with the Boston wing have been shut down (by DeBrusk). But after scoring two goals, including the overtime winner in a 3-2 final over the Kraken at Seattle’s Climate Pledge Arena, DeBrusk took to the microphone, and issued his first comments on the trade request.
“To be honest, I had a meeting with the guys when it first kind of hit or first got out there and I told them I wouldn’t be a distraction, so I respectfully plead the fifth on all of those,” DeBrusk said when asked about the reasoning behind his trade request. “I just wanna talk about the game and stuff. Obviously, I haven’t talked to you guys in a while. It’s a fair question, but I won’t be answering that.”
What’s been interesting about DeBrusk’s request is that his play post-request has certainly been noteworthy, and he’s undoubtedly earned his minutes. DeBrusk’s latest promotion, which has put him back with Patrice Bergeron and Brad Marchand, has come amid his hottest run of the season, with four goals in three games.
Is any of that enough to get DeBrusk to reverse course on his request?
“I think I just said the answer in that sense of I don’t wanna be a distraction or anything,” DeBrusk said in response to a question wondering if he’s reconsidered the request. “It’s one of those things where it’s a tough situation, but I’m focusing day-to-day like I said earlier in the year.”
In other words, no, DeBrusk still wants out of Boston. The ask from the Bruins in the meantime has been that he remains professional, works hard, and competes like everybody else in the room. That’s happened, too, as DeBrusk has had the full support of everybody in the B’s locker room throughout this process.
“It means respect, right? It means they think I’m a good guy and a good teammate, and that’s all you want to be at the end of the day,” DeBrusk said. “You play in that room for all those guys and obviously lots of memories considering playoff runs and I’ve grown up in this organization. That’s kind of another thing I said to them, too, was that I’ll try to keep that the same. There’s obviously going to be down days and up days, but to hear them say that is obviously really nice. It kind of just amplifies how close we are as a group. I’ve been very blessed with that.”
In addition to the two goals, DeBrusk had an all around stat sheet-stuffing night, with four shots, three hits, and two blocked shots in nearly 19 minutes of time on ice. He was engaged from start to finish, and won races and forced turnovers to extend offensive-zone time for the Bruins, and it truly felt like a return to the golden days of DeBrusk’s time with the Bruins.
And while DeBrusk has done his part to ‘forget’ both the good and bad of his time in Boston, he can’t deny the recent results.
“I’m starting to gain some traction for the first time in a while,” DeBrusk admitted. “That’s something every player wants. It takes some puck luck, good passes, and lots of different things to happen. But I’ve always wanted to help this team, so to be able to contribute is the best way I can.”
Here are some other thoughts and notes from a late-night victory in Seattle…