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Cross Kris Versteeg off the list of Bruins’ trade targets, and hey, the Leafs have a first-rounder

02.14.11 at 6:47 pm ET
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Less than a week after the Predators’ trade for Mike Fisher ruled out one trade possibility for the Bruins, the Flyers have taken yet another name off fans’ wish lists. According to a tweet from TSN’s Bob McKenzie, the Flyers have shipped first-and-third-round draft picks to the Maple Leafs for the 24-year-old winger, who has 14 goals and 21 assists for 35 points in 53 games this season.

What does this mean for the Bruins? Well, for starters, it means that the guy they once traded along with a draft pick for Brandon Bochenski is now worth first-and-third-round picks. Secondly, and more importantly, it means that the Maple Leafs’ first-rounder, which the Bruins own, is looking better and better the more they sell off pieces of that roster. Heading into Tuesday’s game against the Bruins, Toronto has 52 points, good for the fifth-worst in the NHL. Edmonton (40 points) is currently in line for its second consecutive first overall pick.

For both the Bruins and prospective trade partners, that’s a good thing. The Leafs clearly aren’t doing much to prevent the B’s from having yet another high pick as a result of the Phil Kessel trade, and anyone willing to do a blockbuster move with the Bruins has to like the idea of selecting in the top five or higher.

From an on-ice standpoint, the top team in the Eastern Conference just got tougher. Peter Chiarelli all but guaranteed the team would make a deal before the Feb. 28 trade deadline in talking to Dale & Holley last week, and now it’s looking like it will have to be a big one.

Read More: Kris Versteeg,
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