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While there are still free agents to be signed and trades to be made with more than a month to go before the start of training camp, this is a quiet time of year in the NHL.
That doesn’t mean a trade won’t be made or at least contemplated, though, and one of the teams that could be involved is the Boston Bruins.
Boston appears to have a slew of young defenseman who could form the core of the team in a year or two. The Bruins have a couple of potential young stars in Brandon Carlo and Charlie McAvoy, and both are right-handed shooters.
The Bruins have still have veterans Zdeno Chara, Adam McQuaid, Kevan Miller and Torey Krug, and the feeling is that Boston needs to upgrade front-line scoring, which means a left wing who can put the puck in the net. The Bruins also have a number of young blue-line prospects in their pipeline.
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The NHL Network analyzed the Bruins’ depth on defense and made the point that they could move a defenseman for a forward. In addition to Carlo and McAvoy, McQuaid and Miller are also right-handed shooters (h/t Joe Haggerty of CSNNE.com).
There has been long-standing talk about the Bruins making a move for forward Matt Duchene of the Colorado Avalanche, and most of that has surrounded Carlo, a Colorado native.
The Pittsburgh Penguins have a need to acquire a third-line center, but there doesn’t appear to be a free agent who can fill the bill.
As a result, the Penguins will be in the market for a center before the season starts Oct. 4. The hot name at this time is Toronto Maple Leafs center Tyler Bozak, who appears expendable since the team has a number of talented, young players and the $4.2 million the 31-year-old is scheduled to receive could be better spent elsewhere.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette sportswriter Sam Werner brought up Bozak’s name, but the salary mentioned could be a stumbling block unless the Penguins make additional personnel moves.
General manager Jim Rutherford had said he does not want to spend more than $2 million on a No. 3 center.
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Veteran center Jaromir Jagr is still available on the free-agent market, but so far he has not received an acceptable offer. As a result, he is skating with his hometown team of Kladno in the Czech Republic.
Czech reporter Zdenek Janda tweeted that Jagr still wants to play in the NHL, and that is still his priority.
Jagr, 45, scored 16 goals and added 30 assists for the Florida Panthers last year. Five of his goals came on the power play and two were game-winners.