In his latest column for NBC Sports Boston, Boston Bruins insider Joe Haggerty dissects the team’s roster and looks for ways in which general manager Don Sweeney can improve his team over the offseason.
While youngsters like Charlie McAvoy, Jake DeBrusk, Ryan Donato and Danton Heinen will all be expected to take their game to another level in 2018-19, it simply won’t be enough for the Bruins to take the next step forward. The Bruins are headed in the right direction, but they’ll still need some offseason tinkering in order to truly be considered a Stanley Cup calibre team, argues Haggerty.
The biggest need is likely on defense. McAvoy has been a revelation, as has youngster Brandon Carlo, but captain Zdeno Chara isn’t getting any younger and top scorer Torey Krug had difficulty staying healthy this past season. In fact, when Krug is out of the lineup, that’s when the Bruins really struggle. So… Haggerty’s solution: trade Krug. Wait… what?
They clearly need another left-side guy that can log 20-plus minutes per night, play in all situations and be there in case anything happens with Chara or Krug. The truth is, though, that a move for a young, experienced D-man could end up costing an asset such as Krug when it’s all said and done.
So… the Bruins need a left-side defenseman that can log 20 minutes a night and they’re looking to move Krug? What kid of sense does that make? Haggerty goes on to suggest that Sweeney could swap out Krug for a defenseman like Darnell Nurse of the Edmonton Oilers, Jonas Brodin of the Minnesota Wild or Noah Hannifin of the Carolina Hurricanes, but what do those players offer above and beyond what Krug offers? Seems like a wash at best.
Even if there is some truth to Haggerty’s words, it’s worth noting that Krug has missed just 15 regular season games over the course of his five year NHL career. Is this the type of player that you give up on over injury concerns? Not likely. It’s almost inconceivable, especially given the Bruins’ track record with players like Patrice Bergeron, that Bruins management would look to trade Krug at this point.
So, is there some truth to the rumors? Who knows? It certainly will make for interesting offseason discussion in Boston this summer, but don’t hold your breath on a Bruins blockbuster involving Krug anytime soon.