An NHL source has confirmed to Boston Hockey Now that the Boston Bruins have let defenseman Torey Krug know that they do not intend to trade or ask Krug to waive his modified no-trade clause before the February 24 NHL Trade Deadline. Krug, in the final year of a four-year contract that carried a $5.2 million cap hit, is set to become an unrestricted free agent on July 1.
“Let’s put it this way, they’re all in to get back to the Final and win the Cup and Don [Sweeney] has told anyone that has inquired that for the Bruins to do that, they need Krug on their roster,” the source said. “Unless it’s the Oilers trading [Connor] McDavid or [Leon] Draisaitl to them, the Bruins won’t be moving Krug before the deadline.”
Back in training camp, at the NHL Media Tour, Krug reiterated that his preference at that time was to remain a Bruin for life and sign an extension. He even said he was willing to take a hometown discount to stay with the Bruins on a long-term deal past this season. Up until that point though, Krug had not heard much from Sweeney and no negotiations had taken place. Krug also asked the media at camp not to ask him about his contract situation again during the season. The media obliged and he has not commented publicly on the matter since September 5. There were whispers earlier in the season that the team, Krug and his agent Wade Arnott had begun negotiations, but nothing was ever confirmed by the team or Krug’s camp.
Two weeks ago, it was reported here that the NHLPA, given the current climate and market, would do their best to persuade Krug to go to free agency and not do the hometown discount he mentioned because he can be a market setter and help other defensemen get some hefty contracts as well. Krug is an alternate player rep for the Bruins and in touch with the PA more than other Bruins players, with the exception of team player rep Brandon Carlo.
“There is no way the PA lets Krug do this given the current climate between the league and them,” an NHL source told BHN at the time. “They know he’s likely guaranteed seven to eight years in the $50-$60 million range and they’re not letting any player pass that up. I’d also think that just given where Krug is in his career, there’s no way he’s taking less than seven years. I believe he’s sincere when he says he’d take less money but I just don’t see that happening because he will be one of the biggest fish on the market. The union wants him setting that market.”
So for now, it appears the Bruins are willing to take their chances after the season and to risk the chance Krug goes to market and hits paydirt with another team and that Krug himself, is as he promised back in September, “finish what we started last season” and try and win the Stanley Cup.
Krug has two goals and three assists in his last four games and has helped his team win all four of those games since the break and go on a five-game winning streak. The puck-moving defenseman and powerplay quarterback has seven goals and 30 assists in 47 games this season. Krug has hit the 50-point plateau in each of his last three seasons and been a team leader in assists. He has 22 powerplay points this season 154 in 509 regular season games.