Thursday, June 4, 2009

Bruins move to sign David Krejci - Who's thought to have the make up of an Steve Yzerman, King Joe Sakic or an Adam Oates!

The Bruins gave their first glimpse into this summer’s master plan yesterday, when it was announced that 23-year-old center David Krejci had signed a new long-term contract.

Canada’s TSN reported the deal is for three years with annual salaries of $3.5 million, $3.75 million and $4 million. The numbers represent a tidy raise for a player who earned $850,000 this past season.

The B’s retention of Krejci, who could have become a restricted free agent July 1, hardly was a surprise. Despite playing all season with a painful hip injury that will require surgery later this week, the Czech Republic native continued his ascent toward stardom. He played all 82 regular-season games and posted 21 goals and 51 assists, along with a plus-37 rating that led the NHL.

No way the Bruins were letting him go anywhere - or even attain RFA status, under which an offer sheet raid by another team might have been conceivable.
Not so certain is whether the B’s will hang on to winger
Phil Kessel who also is headed toward RFA status next month. One source said yesterday the Bruins might trade Kessel for a high first-round pick in the upcoming NHL draft, with the Colorado Avalanche (picking No. 3) a possible partner. Such a deal could make sense for the Bruins because veteran sniper Marco Sturm, who missed most of last season with injuries, will be back.

The Bruins are facing probable salary cap issues, and if they do not have to pay Kessel, who likely will command the same type of money as Krejci, it would somewhat ease the dollar pinch general manager Peter Chiarelli is in while assembling the 2009-10 roster.

Speculation also persists that center Marc Savard, who at season’s end indicated a willingness at least to consider waiving his no-trade contract (he has one year left at $5 million) so that he could play elsewhere, will be moved.

“Peter obviously has a tough job ahead,” Savard said after the B’s premature playoff exit in a seven-game, second-round series against the Carolina Hurricanes. “I don’t know how it’s going to shake out or what’s going to happen.”
The mere notion that Savard could be dealt underscores the value of Krejci, who is seen by many as having the skills and makeup to be another Steve Yzerman, Joe Sakic or Adam Oates - all supreme playmakers with the added ability to score goals and be strong at both ends of the ice.

“I had Yzerman,” longtime NHL coach Jacques Demers said during the B’s first-round series sweeep of the Montreal Canadiens. “I named him captain at 20 years old. I saw him gradually become a great player. He worked hard at becoming great. Krejci has all the tools to become a great player. He does so many things that most people might not notice.

“He’s just a smart, intelligent, very, very talented player with tremendous hockey sense, great hands and great vision.”
And that was before anyone knew that he was plagued by a torn labrum in his hip, an injury that will require repair and 4-6 months of rehab work.

This article was created by the Boston Herald's B's beat writer Stephen Harris and was originally posted on the Herald's website on 6/3/2009

1 comment:

  1. I'm a little nervous about the hip surgery, but other players have recently had the same surgery and returned to form fine (in baseball - Lowell, A-Rod) and Krejci is young enough to recover quickly.

    I would hate to see Savard go and if we're having issues with the salary cap, how could we afford a #3 overall pick? Does the NHL have a rookie minimum rule like the NFL for the top 3-10 picks?

    I'd love to see players taking pay cuts like the Patriots and Red Sox have when they wanted to do whatever they needed to do to win a championship in Boston. If they really want it as bad as we do, they'd forgo the money for a single season and get it done.