Give longtime Boston Bruins center David Krejci credit; while his media scrums can be vague at times, they’re always honest.
Speaking in his end of the season media Zoom session recently, a clearly pensive and yet conflicted David Krejci laid it on the line when it comes to his future with the only NHL team he’s known since being drafted by the Boston Bruins 33rd overall at the 2004 NHL Entry Draft in Raleigh, North Carolina.
“I talked to my parents, and they asked me. I can’t even give them a straight answer,” Krejci said Friday afternoon. “I just don’t know right now. I just don’t know.”
For the first time in his NHL career, David Krejci can become an unrestricted free agent. He just finished his 15th NHL season. He is coming off a six-year, $43.5 million extension he signed back in 2014. Krejci is seventh in assists (515) and games played (962) in Bruins franchise history. His 730 career points are the eighth-most in franchise history. As David Krejci pointed out, what he does from here with regards to his hockey career will not be based on money. Krejci, 35, also made it clear that if his NHL career is to continue, it will only do so with the Boston Bruins.
“It’s not about money,” he said. “I guess that’s all I can tell you: My next deal is not going to be based on money. Today, I can tell you, it’s not going to be about money. And at the same time, I just can’t see myself playing for a different team. We’ll see what happens I guess. I don’t even know. I talked to my parents, and they asked me, I can’t even give them a straight answer.”
Earlier in his career, David Krejci had hinted that he may consider finishing his career in his native Czech Republic and while his reasoning for that has changed, Krejci made it clear that is still an option should he and the Bruins decide to part ways.
“You guys write a lot that I wanted to finish my career in Czech, which has not changed,” Krejci admitted. “But when I said that, I was younger. I’m a husband. I’m a dad, I have two kids. They’re getting older. So yes, I still, at one point, would like to finish my career in Czech [but] for different reasons now than when I first said it. I would like my kids to speak my language because my parents don’t speak any English. My kids don’t speak Czech. I would like them to learn the language.
But again, when that’s going to happen, or if that’s going to happen, we’ll see. I’m going to try to get away from the game a little bit now and think about lots of things. Spend some time with my family and just go from there.”
The Bruins already waved goodbye to longtime captain Zdeno Chara last offseason and went with a youth movement on the blue line this past season. With a projected $30 million in salary-cap space this offseason, will they try and get younger up front too? They have enough money to do so externally and internally and will have to decide if Krejci still fits into their plans going forward. Unrestricted free agency starts July 28.