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Chiarelli: Bruins were close on two deals for A-list players

03.04.09 at 5:45 pm ET
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Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli didn’t sleep very much the night leading up to today’s NHL trade deadline, but he still managed to pull off a pair of thrifty, smart trades under the radar amid the sleep deprivation and heavy competition.

Chiarelli confirmed there at least two “deals for an A-list player in the prime of their career” type players in the pipeline that he came close to pulling the trigger on, but the deals eventually fell apart when a separate deal to free up salary cap space couldn’t be finalized.

“I was pretty close,” said Chiarelli. “I was in a position cap-wise where we had do a little housekeeping cap-wise in advance of the deal. We had to get some space. We had a deal done midway through the day in abeyance of getting the other deal done for a player of that ilk. That type of player was one of the targets we were after, so we were close.

“We were in a position to get that player, but in the end we couldn’t (do the deal),” added Chiarelli. “At the end of the day it takes two to tango. We were working on two (deals), and we had that housekeeping deal to create some space and it just didn’t happen. At some point, I had to pull the plug on it and it just didn’t happen.”

It’s believed that one of those deals was obviously a trade with the Anaheim Ducks that was rumored to be centered around either Patrice Bergeron or Phil Kessel, and the second deal may have involved Oilers winger Erik Cole, who eventually moved to the Carolina Hurricanes in a three-team deal with the Oilers and Los Angeles Kings.

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