Updates on the Bruins & Stars – May 7, 2017

by | May 7, 2017 | Rumors | 25 comments

The Boston Bruins could attempt to trade forward Ryan Spooner this summer.

Looking ahead to potential offseason options for the Boston Bruins and Dallas Stars in your NHL rumor mill.

CSNNE.COM: Joe Haggerty believes the Boston Bruins should avoid free agency this summer to address their roster needs. He noted Bruins president Cam Neely doesn’t anticipate his club will be very busy chasing free agents. Haggerty thinks that’s a good thing, noting the mixed results they got from the expensive signings of Matt Beleskey and David Backes over the last two years.

It sounds as though the Bruins are leaning toward trades to bolster their defense. He advocates they wait for things to settle down with the expansion draft and free agency and use “some of their treasure trove of prospects to swap for a left winger like Gabriel Landeskog or a left-side defenseman like Cam Fowler.” However, in a recent mailbag segment, he expressed doubt that Fowler will be leaving the Ducks.

BOSTON HERALD: Steve Conroy believes Bruins restricted free agent forward Ryan Spooner could have some value in the trade market, especially if he’s packaged with another asset. If Spooner isn’t traded before the expansion draft, Conroy suggests placing him on the Bruins list of protected players, rather than lose the winger for nothing.

If Beleskey or Jimmy Hayes are unprotected, Conroy doubts the Vegas Golden Knights will be interested in either guy with a sweetener coming from the Bruins. Defensemen Adam McQuaid or Colin Miller could be left unprotected.

Conroy also notes Bruins GM Don Sweeney doesn’t expect to be very busy in the UFA market. However, the pundit suggests Pittsburgh Penguins center Nick Bonino could be worth pursuing if he becomes available on July 1.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Neely and Sweeney could be engaging in some misdirection with their comments about unrestricted free agency, but I think Haggerty’s correct in his assumption that they’ll likely look toward the trade market. They’ve got the assets in draft picks and prospects and could targets clubs at risk of losing a good left wing or defenseman via the expansion draft. That could take them out of the bidding this summer for Washington Capitals UFA defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk. 

DALLAS MORNING NEWS:  Mike Heika believes next month’s expansion draft offers the Dallas Stars a good opportunity to upgrade their goaltending. While Kari Lehtonen and Antti Niemi each have a year remaining on their respective contracts, both could be left exposed in the draft. Heika doesn’t expect either guy will be selected by the Vegas Golden Knights.

He speculates the Stars could acquire another goalie via trade and leave Lehtonen and Niemi exposed. Goalies who could be available are ” Joonas Korpisalo of Columbus, Antti Raanta of the Rangers, Philipp Grubauer of Washington, and one of Pittsburgh’s two goalies – Matt Murray or Marc-Andre Fleury.” Heika wonders if the Stars will take this opportunity or ” simply buy out Niemi, keep Lehtonen, and sign a free agent like Ben Bishop or Steve Mason?

Heika also wonders if the Stars could leave forward Cody Eakin exposed in the expansion draft. He also speculates that they could shop Eakin or Antoine Roussel before the draft. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Stars cannot return next season with the tandem of Lehtonen and Niemi. I expect they’ll either try to acquire a goalie before the expansion draft, target clubs with goaltending depth looking to shed salary or pursue Ben Bishop via free agency. I think they’ll be looking at the trade market first. 

Heika notes the Stars new head coach Ken Hitchcock intends to keep Jason Spezza and Tyler Seguin at center. With Radek Faksa considered a lock as their third-line center it could mean either moving Eakin to the wing (where he’s less effective) or exposing him in the draft. 



  1. One way or the other the Stars are going to be buying out one of their 2 expensive goalies because there’s no way McFee takes either one – unless Dallas sweetens the pot dramatically.

    • Dallas 3 rd overall and niemi with 50% held for Murray would be a starter conversation.

      • Why would Dallas risk trading the 3rd overall for a goalie that can’t stay healthy and Pitt is gonna have to give up one of the two for not much of a return?

      • Agree with bigbadbruin no one is going to help the pens in their goalie situation. It’s the pens who are in trouble. They are not in a situation where they hold the cards. They have to expose a goalie. There is no way that gets them the 3rd pick. Also, regardless of how Fluery is playing in these playoffs I still beleive he is the one gone this summer. Not Murray

      • Murray is not going anywhere and that trade is an insult. Would the Caps trade Holtby for that return? Would the Habs trade Price? I don’t understand the sentimentality people have for MAF and his career of massive fluctuations. He’s 10 years older than Murray and is way overpaid. I get that girls think he’s soooo adorable and that is the basis for their attachment but what is the deal from the other side? And I don’t agree that there will be little to no return for him though. Especially with how he’s auditioned for his next team the last few weeks. A first isn’t happening but a second could easily especially if we are taking one of Dallas’ bums off their hands.

      • Almost definitely Marc is gone. But nobody is helping the pens by acquiring Murray. Best young goalie in the NHL right now. A steal at the third overall pick in a weak draft having to take back a two million dollar backup who stinks… now that I put it that way… terrible deal for the pens. If Murray moves it will be because someone blows pens away. Otherwise Marc will be moved for a small return.

      • The thing is, we simply don’t know what Murray will be like behind an inferior D – and if one thing is certain the Falls D is inferior to that of the Pens.

      • How in hell did I get “Falls” out of Stars – I feel that old age creeping up – LOL

      • Maybe George but Pitts d isn’t top o the line either

      • murray isnt price or holyby yet.. he has to stay healthy enough to show he is that good. those teams also dont have the expansion issue so it isnt the same situation at all. I use the schneider trade to base my assumed value. only possible way murray is moved would be based on a lot of what ifs..

        what if Marc is an assumed runner up or winner of the conn smythe
        what if pens think jarry is potential future starter in a couple years or so…
        what if they cant find a taker for Marc due to teams holding their feet to the fire and the have to look at buy out.
        what if they have legit concerns about his ability to stay healthy…
        what if the return for Murray is very strong…

        almost all the above would have to happen together for murray to be moved but it can’t be ruled out. Marc has proved he still is a legit top goalie and playoff starter… 2 mil more a year for his cap hit isnt significant enough to be a barrier. Only people that wouldnt consider it reasonable to at least explore murrays value to see what teams would give for him do so because of a personal dislike for MAF or an infatuation with Murray… not because they want whats best for the team.

      • oh… and that commercial he did with the baby was soooooooo adorable.

    • I agree George O. The goalie position in Dallas is a mess. But they are not terribly strong defensively either. The irony is they don’t have to worry about losing goalies to expansion:)

      • Dallas has been a study in frustration for their fans. When they got Spezza from Ottawa for Chiasson, Guptil, Paul and a 2015 2nd round pick, most were saying Ottawa was fleeced. But in a classic example of the adage that you never judge a transaction too soon, in the 3 years since the deal Ottawa has made the playoffs 2 out 3 while Dallas has missed 2 out of 3. Yeah, Chiasson was allowed to walk as a UFA and neither Guptil nor Paul will ever likely play beyond the AHl. But that Dallas 2nd round pick turned out to be Filip Chlapik, a 6′ 1″ 196 lb C who finished 57 games in the Q with Charlottetown potting 34g and adding 57 assists for 91 points and is a highly-regarded prospect who will benefit from a year or two in Belleville. So the jury is still out, while Dallas fans are looking at a few seasons in the doldrums.

  2. I would like to see Boston make a deal with Minnesota pre expansion draft for Zucker & Brodin. Minnesota has serious protection problems & needs to move ideally 2 Dman so they can protect 7 forwards but even then they are losing 1. If they choose to protect 4D under the 8 skater option they are still losing 1 Dman or a good forward.

    Zucker & Brodin for ? Assets need to be expansion draft exempt so some combination of picks, prospects or players with less than 2 years of NHL/AHL contractual service. Boston has picks & prospects but the only NHL player expansion draft exempt of any potential quality is Vatrano. Boston could choose to protect an asset in expansion then send it to Minnesota post as part of the deal. Similar to the Bernier trade to Anaheim after Toronto had paid his signing bonus. That trade to me was part of the Andersen trade just a business issue so Anaheim could save 2 million in cash.

    Boston has room for 1 forward pre expansion, Zucker? Perhaps they ship Spooner as part of this deal post expansion. A couple of high picks, even 2 1sts, 1 this year & 1 next, 1 of the D prospects not Carlo or McAvoy & 1 of the forward prospects not Senyshyn or JFK. Depending upon which prospects draft picks may get altered slightly?

    • Anytime someone has to list the prospects not included and there is multiple names you already know they arnt ready to pay the real price. For both I think Carlo and a 1st would suffice. Carlo and a 2nd rounder even might work.

      • Boston isn’t trading Carlo anytime soon.

    • Striker it’s Sunday, so I could be a little more confused then usual. First I was actually looking at the same thing for Boston and Zucker to me fits what Boston needs a LW who can play with Krecji. Here’s the confusing part are u saying Spooner Plus 2 1st and a D prospect for Zucker? or both Zucker and Brodin? which it must be, because no way in heck would you consider Spooner and a 1st for Zucker. By making that deal you would be protecting Chara, Krug and Brodin leaving both Millers and Mcquaid unprotected. Yea I could live with that deal.

      • Both players with most of the compensation being paid just to get Brodin.

  3. NYR and DAL may help each other? Raanta and one of their overpaid Dman Girardi/Staal for Niemi and Eakin ??

    • That causes protection problems for both teams. NYR has to many keepers alreadt at forward & Dallas at D.

  4. Ihatecrosby,
    That sounds like a good idea, until Dallas realizes they are now paying a Defenceman who isn’t worth the $5+M he is making for then next 4 years.

    • LOL. And the fact that, not counting Hamhuis, (3,750,000 to 2018-19), they are only paying the other 5 combined (Oleksiak, Nemeth, Pateryn, Lindell and Johns) a total of $4,089,583.

      • In terms of what Staal and Girardi bring to the table, they’re akin to a Kris Russell with more age and money. Their defense was a lot better with Russel than without, wasn’t it? And if we’re talking realistically, the rangers will try for Shattenkirk, which improves all three pairings. McD Shattenkirk skjei Smith (please resign him) Holden and whichever they don’t move.

        Is there any interest in Klein these days? He’s been off the ice for a long time.

      • I don’t know about Russell’s overall contributions, but the guy they really missed was Goligoski.

  5. I would love Boston to add Bonino. Also have a friend that knows him personally. He’s from the area dad works close by. But when I asked if he grew up a Bruins fan was told he was a red wings fan.
    Might want to sign close to home.
    I wouldn’t rule out Carlo being moved for Laneskog. With Mcavoy looking like a number one. Kevin Miller and Colin Miller could be the right side.
    This would help Boston keep both Millers and expose Maquaid.
    Please no on Shattenkirk