Here’s the second of our three features on the potential restricted free agents for the Boston Bruins and whether or not they will return to play with the Bruins in the 2023-24 regular season or beyond.
Will 25-year-old forward Trent Frederic be back with the Boston Bruins for the 2023-24 season, and if so, what position will he be playing?
Trent Frederic is set to become an arbitration eligible restricted free agent and is awaiting a qualifying offer from the Boston Bruins, who have until June 30 to submit one. After career-high in goals (17), assists (14) and points with 31 in 79 games, the 25-year-old Frederic is in for a pay raise from the $1.05 million cap hit he carried for each of the last two seasons.
Frederic told reporters that his agent Allain Roy and Boston Bruins general manager Don Sweeney have already been talking about a new contract.
“My agent and Sweens [Don Sweeney] will talk,” Frederic said back on May 2. “I don’t know much about it. I want to be here for as long as I can. I want to be a Bruin as long as I can. I’ve had fun being here this year, been awesome, and hopefully we can do it again next year.”
The read here is that if, as expected, Boston Bruins veteran center Tomas Nosek hits the unrestricted free agent market on July 1, then not only will Frederic be inked to a new contract with the Bruins but he will center the fourth line. At the players’ last media availability, the 29th overall pick at the 2016 NHL Draft said he welcome a switch back to his natural position.
“That would be awesome. That’s been my position my whole life until I got here,” Frederic replied when asked if he would welcome the opportunity to play at his natural position on a full-time basis next season.
If captain Patrice Bergeron and veteran center David Krejci don’t return, then Frederic likely will be given a chance to seize the 3C slot as Charlie Coyle and Pavel Zacha slide up the center depth chart. The Bruins are and will continue to scour the NHL trade market for center help, but don’t expect them to score one on the UFA market given there tight salary cap situation. That means they wind up leaning heavily on Frederic to elevate his game in the middle.