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A New Wrinkle To Recent Bruins-Draisaitl Rumor

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Is there more than smoke to the rumors that the Boston Bruins could either acquire or eventually sign Edmonton Oilers superstar center Leon Draisaitl?

Three weeks ago, former NHLer and NHL analyst on French radio and TV in Quebec, Georges Laraque, floated the idea of Draisaitl becoming a Boston Bruin. Speaking on BPM Sports, 91.9 FM in Montreal, Laraque reported that Draisaitl is interested in playing for the Boston Bruins if he does not sign an extension with the Edmonton Oilers.

“Someone well placed within the Oilers organization said that if the Oilers don’t go deep in the playoffs, he doesn’t see Draisaitl re-signing at the end of his deal and that he’d prefer to be a first-line center in Boston,” the former Oilers enforcer said.

Laraque later clarified that report to Boston Hockey Now:

“Someone around the team told me that there’s a chance Leon doesn’t resign with the Oilers and the importance of this playoff run was huge for that regard then when we were talking about potential best fit I said Boston because they had no centers.”

Laraque was correct that the Bruins need a bonafide, playmaking No.1 center. Both Charlie Coyle and Pavel Zacha did more than admirable jobs filling the void of the retired Patrice Bergeron and David Krejci, but neither is a true No. 1 pivot like Draisiatl would be on any NHL team that doesn’t have Connor McDavid. However, there have been no other reports of Draisaitl potentially thinking about a change of scenery this offseason or next.

As his team prepares to play the Dallas Stars in the Western Conference Final, which starts Thursday night in Dallas, Leon Draisaitl is a front-runner for the 2024 Conn Smythe Trophy. Draisaitl leads all NHL skaters in points with 24. He’s third in goals with eight lamplighters and second in assists with 16. He is coming off his third straight 100-point season, in which he scored 41 goals and had 65 assists in 81 regular-season games.

Leon Draisaitl is about to enter the final season of an eight-year, $68 million ($8.5M AAV) contract. The 6-foot-2, 207-pound forward will be 30 years old if and when his contract expires after the 2024-25 season.

Ironically enough, a source who knows Draisaitl recently brought the topic of Draisaitl joining the Boston Bruins up to Boston Hockey Now. While this source did not indicate one way or another if Draisaitl would sign an extension with the Oilers, he did divulge one interesting nugget connecting the Bruins and the German superstar:

According to this source, Draisaitl works out with Bruins superstar winger David Pastrnak in Prague each offseason, and the two have become ‘friends.’

In his final media availability session of the season this past Sunday, Pastrnak told reporters he is ready to help Bruins general manager Don Sweeney – who has $20.5 million in cap space to use this offseason – recruit players to come play for the Bruins.

“People should be excited to come play for an organization like the Boston Bruins,” Pastrnak said before flying home to Prague to play for Czechia in the 2024 IIHF World Championships.

Imagine Pastrnak and Draisaitl on the top 5-on-5 forward line and the Bruins’ top powerplay unit?

It’s hard to see that happening this offseason, but if the chance to acquire and/or sign Draisaitl does become a reality for Sweeney, he can apparently depend on Pastrnak to help.

 

 

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