After recording his third shutout of the season with a 31-save performance in a 3-0 win over the New Jersey Devils, Boston Bruins goalie Jeremy Swayman did his best to shake off speculation regarding his contract status.
That speculation arose from comments the first-time NHL All-Star goalie made after making 20 saves in a 4-3 overtime win over the St. Louis Blues this past Saturday night. Swayman was asked about being selected to the NHL All-Star game for the first time in his young NHL career.
“That’s really special,” Swayman replied. “First and foremost, it couldn’t have happened without the team in front of me. Huge kudos to them for allowing that to happen, but after dealing with what I did this summer with arbitration and hearing things that a player should never hear, it feels pretty special to be in this situation. I’m extremely honored, and I’m really excited to join ‘Pasta’ [David Pastrnak] and ‘Monty’ [Jim Montgomery].”
Ironically, two days before Swayman made those comments, his agent Lewis Gross was on the 32 Thoughts Podcast telling hosts Jeff Marek and Elliotte Friedman how happy Swayman is playing for the Boston Bruins.
“Jeremy loves Boston. Jeremy loves being a Bruin,” Gross said. “It’s a great organization. He’s a great young goaltender, confident as can be. And as good as he is on the ice – I was just with him in Boston, and he’s equally as good off the ice. … He actually is such an incredible young man. And I know the Bruins know that and we’re gonna hopefully work out a deal that everybody’s gonna be happy with.”
That reference to his arbitration experience last August, in which Jeremy Swayman was awarded a one-year, $3.47 million contract, set off some speculation that Swayman is unhappy with the status of his contract extension talks with the Boston Bruins. In his postgame scrum on Mondays, Swayman walked back his comments a bit, and said that his focus is fixated on continuing the brilliant season he’s having on the ice.
“I think it was a great learning experience. I’m not gonna lean on it. It’s already happened; what’s happened has happened,” Swayman said. “I’m living in the present moment. And again, it just goes back to the experience. And I wouldn’t be the human being I am, I wouldn’t be the player I am if I didn’t go through it. If I didn’t have the years in college, and I didn’t have the years of junior [hockey], and the years in the NHL. So I’m grateful for everything that’s come my way and I’m excited for what’s to come. I’m allowed to lean on my experience when things happen and that’s what I did.”
"I'm going to compete and give the team a chance to win every night. No doubt in my mind Linus is going to be back in no time. He’s a Swedish viking. We all know that he's a stud, so he's going to be back and I can't wait to have him back." — Jeremy Swayman pic.twitter.com/eBJBXP7vKL
— Boston Bruins (@NHLBruins) January 15, 2024
With the shutout on Monday, Swayman is now tied for the fourth-most donuts in the NHL. He is now 13-3-7, he’s sixth in goals-against average (2.38) and is fourth in the NHL in save percentage (.922). All reports to this point have indicated that there is strong mutual interest from both the team and player to nail down an extension, but the longer the Bruins go without locking Swayman up, and the better he plays, the cost and term will keep going up for the Bruins to pay.