As the NHL Free Agency began, the Boston Bruins remained a constant in NHL trade and free agent rumors and a half hour in, the Bruins locked up defenseman Derek Forbort to a three-year, $9 million contract.
Confirming Derek Forbort signs with the Bruins for three years/$9 million. Averaged 2:43 SH ice time per game last year.
— Fluto Shinzawa (@FlutoShinzawa) July 28, 2021
Sportsnet Insider Elliotte Friedman had speculated this would happen two days ago.
On Tuesday, there were multiple reports that the Bruins had signed defenseman Mike Reilly to a three-year, $9 million contract. FOBHN (Friend of Boston Hockey Now), Kirk Luedeke also reported that the Bruins had locked up veteran center David Krejci, but no details regarding term and money were provided. An NHL executive source told BHN Wednesday morning that he had heard one-year, $5.5 million for Krejci but that could not be confirmed.
One big but expected note before we go on, for the first time in his NHL career, goalie Tuukka Rask is now an unrestricted free agent. Obviously, Rask likely won’t get signed since he’s about to undergo hip surgery and his agent Markus Lehto told BHN on Tuesday “Nothing much really” when asked if there were any updates on the Bruins starter for the last eight seasons. Still though, it sounds and seems weird that he could technically not be a Bruin anymore.
Also, within minutes of the official start of free agency, the Bruins lost one of their UFA’s. Forward Sean Kuraly is going home to Columbus on a four-year contract.
Told #CBJ have signed free agent center Sean Kuraly to a four-year contract.
The Dublin kid is coming home after five seasons with #NHLBruins organization.
— Aaron Portzline (@Aportzline) July 28, 2021
As reported by the newest member of the National Hockey Now Network, Vancouver Hockey Now, the Canucks have signed now-former goalie Jaro Halak.
Halak #Canucks $1.5M Cap Hit, $3M AAV.
$1.5M Cap Hit counts during the year, and any of the $1.5M performance bonuses earned are added at end of year. If those bonuses push #Canucks over $81.5M, the overage is a carryover cap hit next yearhttps://t.co/SSgBAP7Oba https://t.co/YSz1sY1zeF
— PuckPedia (@PuckPedia) July 28, 2021
As of 12:30 PM ET, here was the official list of Boston Bruins on the UFA market:
Paul Carey, David Krejci (reportedly set to re-sign with Bruins), Greg McKegg, Tuukka Rask, Mike Reilly (reportedly re-signed), Jarred Tinordi.
On Monday morning, my Irish compadre reported that the Boston Bruins were in the mix to reunite Bruins captain Patrice Bergeron with his Hockey Canada 2005 World Juniors teammate. Bergeron and Getzlaf, along with Sidney Crosby, were part of the best World Junior team ever assembled. Sources told yours truly that there’s a good chance Getzlaf may be reunited with Crosby too.
I know the #NHLBruins in the mix for Ryan Getzlaf and trying to reunite him with Patrice Bergeron but don't be surprised if he reunites with another teammate from that 2005 WJC Canada Gold team with #LetsGoPens
— MurphysLaw74 (@MurphysLaw74) July 28, 2021
But alas, Getzlaf will stay with the Ducks:
— Kevin Weekes (@KevinWeekes) July 28, 2021
The Bruins also continued to be busy on the NHL trade market as they were engaged with the Seattle Kraken in trade talks regarding the plethora of defensemen the Kraken took in the NHL Expansion Draft.
The Bruins were in on forward Blake Coleman but the Calgary Flames locked him up.
Blake Coleman's deal with #Flames: Six years, $4.9M AAV.
— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) July 28, 2021
While the Minnesota Wild pulled out of NHL trade talks for Chelmsford, MA native and Buffalo Sabres captain Jack Eichel, an NHL Executive told BHN the Boston Bruins, New York Rangers, Philadelphia Flyers, Los Angeles Kings, Anaheim Ducks and Vegas Golden Knights remained in talks with Sabres GM Kevyn Adams.
Asset price/cost too much for Minnesota to stomach/make work
— Michael Russo (@RussoHockey) July 28, 2021
The Bruins had expressed interest in former Minnesota Wild defenseman Ryan Suter on the NHL trade market and in free agency but thankfully didn’t lose their mind and sign the 36-year-old to this insane deal:
Ryan Suter's deal with Dallas will be 4 times at $3.65M AAV. Dallas is where he sustained that serious leg/ankle injury in 2018
Zach Parise's reported deal with #isles, he had choices of 1 (with potential bonises), 2 and 3 years. We'll see what he chose.
— Michael Russo (@RussoHockey) July 28, 2021
Just a thought here but would be Bruins fans be OK if the B’s walked away from Rask and traded for Marc-Andre Fleury to mentor Jeremy Swayman this season?
Stay tuned for more here on NHL Free Agent Frenzy Day!