Boston Bruins

VANCOUVER, BC - FEBRUARY 22: Jake DeBrusk #74 of the Boston Bruins skates with the puck during NHL action against the Vancouver Canucks at Rogers Arena on February 22, 2020 in Vancouver, Canada. (Photo by Rich Lam/Getty Images)

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…

  • Feb 24, 2022; Seattle, Washington, USA; Boston Bruins left wing Brad Marchand (63) passes the puck past Seattle Kraken defenseman Mark Giordano (5) during the third period at Climate Pledge Arena.  (Steven Bisig/USA TODAY Sports)

    Brad Marchand returns to action, will end fight with NHL

    With his six-game suspension behind him following an unsuccessful appeal to NHL commissioner Gary Bettman, Bruins wing Brad Marchand is ready to put the incident in his rear view mirror. In every sense of the term, too, as the Boston superstar has decided not to appeal to an independent arbitrator.

    “To appeal, it would essentially, at this point, [be to] just to kind of change for the future,” Marchand said prior to Thursday’s game. “It’s not as big of a hit against my record and the money standpoint, but I think I’m just gonna move past it. It is what it is at this point, kind of accept the decision and just get back to playing.

    “I miss being around the guys and I miss being part of the group so I’m just so excited for that and to be back that I don’t need any of the negative energy that that whole process brings and I’m just gonna move forward.”

  • WASHINGTON, DC – MAY 11: Curtis Lazar #20 of the Boston Bruins looks on during the second period of the game against the Washington Capitals at Capital One Arena on May 11, 2021 in Washington, DC. (Scott Taetsch/Getty Images)

    Curtis Lazar exits win with undisclosed injury

    The Bruins appeared to lose a forward in the winning effort, with Curtis Lazar on the ice for just 3:52 of action and zero shifts after the second period of Thursday’s win over the Kraken.

    It’s unclear what exactly happened to Lazar, but if he is going to miss any time, the Bruins do have Jesper Froden and Anton Blidh with them as extra forwards for the road trip. The most likely move, you’d think, would be to move Nick Foligno over to right wing and plug Anton Blidh to the left of Tomas Nosek on Boston’s fourth line. But Froden’s status as a natural right-shot, right wing could have its value to the Bruins.

    The 27-year-old Lazar has a career-high six goals, along with 13 points, through 44 games this season.

  • Feb 24, 2022; Seattle, Washington, USA; Seattle Kraken center Ryan Donato (9) advances the puck while being defended by Boston Bruins defenseman Mike Reilly (6) during the first period at Climate Pledge Arena. (Steven Bisig/USA TODAY Sports)

    Checking in on the Seattle’s score of ex-Bruins

    The Kraken certainly have a Boston flavor this year, and it was on display Thursday night, with four former Bruins in Dave Hakstol’s lineup, and five on the roster in total if you include the injured Karson Kuhlman. (Six if you want to include assistant coach Jay Leach, who left his post as the head coach of the P-Bruins for a spot on Hakstol’s staff.)

    Up front, Ryan Donato finished the loss with one hit and a giveaway in 10:31 of play. The Scituate, Mass. native, who has played for the Wild and Sharks since the Bruins traded him as part of the Charlie Coyle trade in 2019, has totaled 11 goals and 18 points in 49 games for the Kraken this season. Those 11 goals are tied with Yanni Gourde for the third-most among all Seattle skaters this season.

    Austin Czarnik, who last skated for the Bruins in 2017-18, skated in his fifth game with the Kraken after Seattle scooped him up off waivers from the Islanders earlier this month, and is now up to two goals and six points in 16 games between New York and the Kraken this year.

    Veteran wing Marcus Johansson, meanwhile, finished with an assist and two shots on goal in 18:04 of time on ice. A pending free agent, I do wonder if the Bruins would have an interest in bringing Johansson back for another run with the club should the Kraken decide to trade him. Though a left shot, Johansson was comfortable playing right wing during his time in Boston, which remains a need for the club ahead of this year’s deadline.

    And on Seattle’s backend, Lauzon finished with a Kraken-leading three hits and two blocked shots, and logged a game-high 6:12 shorthanded time on ice against a Boston power play that finished the night with an 0-for-5 mark. Lauzon did, however, come through with an unfortunate ‘assist’ on DeBrusk’s first goal.