Boston Bruins winger Marcus Johansson is set to hit the unrestricted free agent on July 1 and Friday he told the media he has yet to begin negotiations with the Bruins on a new deal but made it clear just how much he has loved playing in Boston since being traded there by the New Jersey Devils at the NHL Trade Deadline.
“No. We’re still trying to recover from what happened the other day but we’ll get around to that,” Johansson said when asked if talks had started with Bruins General Manager Don Sweeney. “I’ve loved it here. It’s been unbelievable. So we’ll talk and see what happens and see if we can work something out. Like I’ve said, this has been an unbelievable place to play and I really loved it.”
Most of the Bruins veteran core has taken less money than they maybe could’ve gotten on the open market to remain in Boston and contend for the Stanley Cup. Would the 28-year-old winger do the same?
“Well, I think playing somewhere where you feel happy, your family’s happy, and like it has been for me, that means a lot and that’s something I value a lot too,” he said. “So, hopefully, we get to talking soon and we’ll see what happens.”
After finding his stride while skating alongside center Charlie Coyle in the Stanley Cup playoffs, Johansson increased his value with four goals and 11 assists in 24 playoff games.
Johansson was then asked though if he felt he owed it to his family and himself to at least test the market? He can begin to do so on June 23 when the UFA interview period begins prior to the July 1 start of free agency.
“I think whatever’s best for me and my family and like I said, I have time to talk to Boston here first and if that happens. …we’ll see what happens,” he replied. “We’ll see what happens. It’s tough to say. I want to see what Don has to say and I will definitely consider whatever we talk about and take it from there. I don’t know much yet. I really love it here and it’s definitely a place I could see myself staying.”
Johansson was limited by injuries right after arriving in Boston in late February and had a goal and two assists in ten regular season games.