NHL Insider Believes Pastrnak Forced Bruins’ Hands
Boston Bruins all-star winger David Pastrnak is arguably working himself into Hart Trophy consideration as he is on pace for a career-high in goals and assists at the NHL All-Star break.
As he took to the NHL All-Star scene in Sunrise, Florida on Friday, Pastrnak was on pace for 55 goals and 55 assists in his contract year. Both Boston Bruins general manager Don Sweeney and Pastrnak’s agent J.P. Barry have continued to express optimism to the media when it’s come to the Bruins locking their best player up to a multi-year contract. For the last three weeks, Sportsnet NHL Insider Elliotte Friedman has continued to report progress in contract talks, and while he did that on Friday in the latest 32 Thoughts podcast, Friedman also said he believes the Bruins may have underestimated the season Pastrnak was in store for:
“I think there are some players here, and Dylan Larkin is one of them, and David Pastrnak’s another,” Friedman said. “I saw a lot of agents [Friday] – and we’re gonna talk agents in another minute – Pastrnak? I think that one is moving towards getting done.
I think when this is over, we will find out that David Pastrnak pushed the Boston Bruins in a position they didn’t think they would get to, and didn’t want to be in simply because David Pastrnak. …what’s the biggest weapon you have in a negotiation? The willingness to say no. And, I think David Pastrnak had a willingness to say: ‘Look, if you guys aren’t going to do this, it’s going to be a problem’ and I think he pushed the Bruins into an area that maybe they didn’t want to go, and I think it’s gonna get done because they didn’t recognize it has to get done.
That’s my opinion. I mean I asked him in the media scrum in Toronto on Wednesday, I went to the morning skate, and I said ‘Anything to do with the contract?’ and he just said ‘No’, and I just said ‘OK. I respect that’, I think we’re getting there.”
Common chatter around the NHL has the Boston Bruins likely signing David Pastrnak to an eight-year, $88 million contract but one NHL source told Boston Hockey Now recently he thinks it will go just a bit north to $92 million with a $11.5M AAV. If Friedman is reading thing correctly though – and this puck scribe has no reason to doubt he is – it could head towards the North Pole!
The price is only going up.