The expectation all along was that David Krejci would be returning to the Boston Bruins next season barring something unanticipated happening, and it looks like that’s exactly what’s going to happen. The 35-year-old center has “a deal that is going to be finalized” according to the New England Hockey Journal’s Kirk Luedeke.
Hearing David Krejci coming back to Bruins. Good source- the one that has told me all along that team & player wanted to get it done, as reported to @Johnston985 & Flynn on Sunday. Deal being finalized. Big piece in place to lock up top-6
— Kirk Luedeke (@kluedeke29) July 27, 2021
Krejci sounded uncertain about his future when he spoke to the media during zoom exit interviews following the playoffs and was wrestling with the notion that he wants his children to spend more time in his native Czech Republic sooner rather than later.
“I’m going to need a few weeks and think about lots of things. But again, I love Boston. This is my home. I just don’t see myself playing anywhere else,” said Krejci last month after the conclusion of Boston’s second round series vs. the Islanders. “But at the same time, we’ll see what happens.
“At one point, I would like to finish my career in Czech – 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.”
It’s expected it will be a one-year deal for Krejci at a reduced rate from the $7.25 million he was making on his last contract, and it could very realistically also contain incentive bonuses that could bump it higher based on his age. Krejci had eight goals and 44 points in 51 games along with a plus-16 rating last season but was clearly energized down the stretch after he was matched with left winger Taylor Hall following the trade deadline.
The one-year deal for Krejci should ensure that the second line of Hall-Krejci-Craig Smith is held intact next season and the Bruins will get another crack with the group of forwards that really gelled after the trade deadline. Krejci added two goals and nine points in 11 playoff games, but the entire B’s second line went pretty quiet against the New York Islanders in the six game playoff series.
Krejci in the fold allows the Boston Bruins to continue focusing on the defensemen position where they have been linked to players like Derek Forbort and should be shopping for a couple of legit NHL blueliners once free agency opens on Tuesday.