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NHL Trade Talk: Bruins Not In On Eichel But Looking For Help On Defense

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Whether a Jack Eichel trade takes place soon or sometime later this season, the Boston Bruins likely won’t be involved.

The Eichel NHL trade chatter picked up dramatically heading into this past weekend but by Monday, Eichel was still a member of the Buffalo Sabres. According to a well-placed NHL source, while the Bruins are actively trying to improve their team on the NHL trade market, they’re not involved in the Eichel trade sweepstakes and haven’t been for a while.

“Donny [Bruins GM Don Sweeney] has been looking for a d-man and has been for a bit now, but as far as I know, he’s not in on Eichel and hasn’t been since the draft,” the source told Boston Hockey Now recently. “Like so many have pointed out, the ask is just too high for the Bruins and really for almost every team in the league.”

While the general belief amongst this source and many NHL insiders is that the Sabres’ trade demands for Eichel on the NHL trade market have decreased a bit, the starting point with the Bruins would still likely be a top 6 forward or top 4 defenseman, a top prospect already on the NHL roster (likely Jack Studnicka or Jeremy Swayman), a first round pick and likely more picks on top of that.

The Bruins aren’t moving Brad Marchand, Patrice Bergeron or David Pastrnak, and the Sabres likely aren’t interested in re-acquiring Taylor Hall or trading for Charlie Coyle or Craig Smith. On the blue line, the B’s just inked Charlie McAvoy to an eight-year, $76 million extension so he’s not going anywhere, and if they’re looking for another defenseman, they’re likely, not interested in trading Brandon Carlo. As for Swayman and Studnicka, the read here is they would be more willing to listen on the former and not the latter. With David Krejci’s departure this past offseason, there’s already a void up the middle, and while Bruins fans don’t want to hear it, captain Patrice Bergeron isn’t getting any younger and he also doesn’t have a contract past this season.

On Friday, Vegas Hockey Now confirmed numerous reports that the Golden Knights had become frontrunners for Eichel on the NHL trade market and that the Calgary Flames and Colorado Avalanche were still lurking but alas Eichel and injured and painful neck were still being held hostage by Sabres general manager Kevyn Adams and owners Kim and Terry Pegula.

As for why a team like the Bruins – who have just 18 goals in seven games and a powerplay (15.8 percent) ranked 23rd – are searching for a defenseman on the NHL trade market?

“They need more offense from their blue line and specifically their top 4,” the aforementioned NHL source observed.

He’s not wrong. Charlie McAvoy (1g, 2a), Derek Forbort (1g,1a), Connor Clifton (1a), and Mike Reilly (1a), are the only blueliners to register a point thus far. The analytical darling, Matt Grzelcyk, has no points in seven games. That’s simply not enough offense coming from the back end so it makes sense that Sweeney would be on the hunt for a rearguard that can create more offense.

With 20 years of experience (SiriusXM NHL Network Radio, ESPNBoston, NESN, NHL.com, etc.) covering the Bruins, the NHL, NCAA and junior hockey and more, Jimmy Murphy’s hockey black book is full of Hall of Famers, current players, coaches, management, scouts and a wide array of hockey media personalities that have lived in and around this great game. For 17 of his 20 years as a hockey and sports reporter, Murph covered the Bruins on essentially a daily basis covering their victorious 2011 Stanley Cup run and their 2013 run to the Final as well. Murphy has hosted national and local radio shows and podcasts and also has experience in TV as well.

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William Mahoney

Bruins Management wake up! Jack Eichel would save your butt.

Alex Charron

#1 they can’t afford his cap #2 they have nothing to give up #3 with a neck injury one good hit he’s done and 1 player won’t win the cup look at Toronto

Rick W Murray

They have to acquire a number one centre Patrice will be out sooner than later krecjis not coming back, Coyle’s not even a second line centre Sweeney get busy!!! If you’re thinking now, you still have to think of future and an Eichel at even 80 % is better than half the players in the nhl. Please fire Sweeney for heavens sake he’s had almost six months to figure out what this team needs Forbort, the oft injured Foligno, Huala & Nosek aren’t it!

[…] While the Vegas Golden Knights, Calgary Flames, and Colorado Avalanche may be trying to outbid each other on Buffalo Sabres center Jack Eichel, the Boston Bruins are more concerned about finding a defenseman that can create some offense. (BHN) […]

[…] The Bruins aren’t in on Eichel, but they are looking for help on D. [Boston Hockey Now] […]

[…] The Bruins aren’t in on Eichel, but they are looking for help on D. [Boston Hockey Now] […]

Derrick Devlin

Sweeney continues to not address needs this team has had since day 1 a top 6 center.Same with size and toughness because everyone takes runs at Bergeron,Pasta,Marchand,Mcavoy and Carlo because there’s zero fear from any bruins and they are 1 of the smallest teams in the league yearly and it’s been like that now for the past 4 years.When Cam Neely (my favorite player) made a statement about not knowing why this team keeps getting conclusions??I almost drove my car into a wall 😡! It’s because they are tiny on D and please Carlo IS NOT A GRITTY PLAYER NOR… Read more »

[…] BOSTON HOCKEY NOW: Jimmy Murphy reports the Boston Bruins likely won’t be involved in any Eichel trade. He cites a well-placed source saying the Bruins are trying to improve their roster but haven’t been involved in the Eichel trade sweepstakes for a while. […]

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[…] Boston Bruins were linked to Buffalo Sabres center Jack Eichel but Boston Hockey Now’s Jimmy Murphy reports they weren’t in the Eichel sweepstakes for some time. GM Don Sweeney instead shifted […]

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[…] Boston Bruins were linked to Buffalo Sabres center Jack Eichel but Boston Hockey Now’s Jimmy Murphy reports they weren’t in the Eichel sweepstakes for some time. GM Don Sweeney instead shifted […]

[…] Boston Bruins were linked to Buffalo Sabres center Jack Eichel but Boston Hockey Now’s Jimmy Murphy reports they weren’t in the Eichel sweepstakes for some time. GM Don Sweeney instead shifted […]

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