BRIGHTON, MA – If Boston Bruins fans are looking for erstwhile playmaking center David Krejci to come walking through that door, they shouldn’t be holding their breath.
Krejci spent the past year playing in his native Czech Republic after 14 seasons in Boston, posted 20 goals and 46 points in 51 games for Olomouc HC and is currently playing with the Czechs at the World Championships where he’ll be joined by David Pastrnak in short order.
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He wanted his family to spend time in his native Czech Republic while his children were still young, so now was the right time for him despite being able to play in the NHL at a very high level as a 35-year-old this past hockey season.
The Boston Bruins absolutely missed Krejci, who had forged strong chemistry with Taylor Hall in their short time playing together, but did eventually find a de facto replacement in Erik Haula centering Hall and Pastrnak.
Haula finished with 18 goals and 44 points in 78 games this season, the same kind of numbers that Krejci posted in his last couple of seasons in Boston. Still, the Boston Bruins are leaving the door ajar for Krejci to come back from the Czech Republic next season if he wants to take one last run, which perhaps could convince Patrice Bergeron to do the same.
The idea of a Hall/Krejci/Pastrnak second line is beyond intriguing if they keep the band together, and perhaps could draw No. 46 back into the fold.
“Not recently,” said Boston Bruins GM Don Sweeney, when asked if he’d had any conversations with Krejci recently. “David Pastrnak, along with Jeremy Swayman and Linus Ullmark have all traveled over to the World Championships and will play. Knowing how close they are, I’m sure there will be a conversation that maybe filters back to me. I certainly kept in touch with David and his camp throughout the year. He had hard decisions to make in terms of the promise he had made to his family overall. Just ultimately decided to stay and see it through. I’m sure at some point in time if he decides he wants to return, then hopefully I get a call and we can have a conversation. But I have not gone down that path for several months.
“It has to line up for a number of reasons. Still, it looks like [Krejci] values playing the game and being highly competitive and was highly productive. Seamlessly would probably fall back into knowing what our team is like and what we’re trying to accomplish, but again, it’s a hypothetical for me at this point in time. I’ll cross that bridge when it’s presented.”
Would a return for Krejci and the Boston Bruins make sense if he was looking to return to North America? Indications are that David Krejci would only consider the Boston Bruins if he did return to the NHL for next season, so it’s worth looking into at some point once the Boston Bruins figure out which way the wind is blowing with Patrice Bergeron’s future in Black and Gold.