With the NHL  trade deadline just hours away, NESN Bruins studio analyst Barry Pederson joined Mut & Merloni Monday afternoon to talk about what the Bruins need to improve and what kind of moves they should make, if any.
Very few major moves have been made by any teams, but Pederson said that he would be more surprised if the Bruins made no move than if they made a major trade.
“I think they need some depth, especially when Andrew Ference  went down, that really showed me that you needed another left-handed defenseman,” Pederson said. “I would look for them to try to add that because I know that Dennis Seidenberg  can play the right side, he showed that and then some in the playoffs what he could do when he’s with [Zdeno] Chara, and I think they’ll want to do that come playoff time again.
“I think you want to get some depth up front for the reasons we just talked about — you’re not sure what’s going to happen with Nathan [Horton], you’re hoping he can come back, and Rich Peverley  with that knee injury, you never know what they’re going to be like.”
That being said, Pederson noted that the Bruins would be wise to not jeopardize the promising future that they have with their current roster.
“They’re still in great, great shape,” Pederson said. “They’ve got a great core, they’re well-positioned salary cap-wise, they’re young, they’re talented, they’re physical, they’re packing the building over here.
“The Bruins fans are excited not only because of last year’s win, but if you look ahead and you go, ‘You know what? Barring any major injuries, this organization is built to be good for a number of years to come.’ ”
Part of the reason the Bruins should be weary of a major trade, to Pederson, is that trades often come with a wide array of variables and can often backfire.
“The difficult part with that, and it’s the same thing I’m sure the Rangers are kind of talking about and Pittsburgh with [Sidney] Crosby, is you have concussions and you also have great chemistry, and that’s something that you can’t take for granted,” Pederson said. “One of the major reasons for the Bruins to be so successful in that Cup run last year was they had each other’s back.
“It was an all-for-one, one-for-all type of mentality. The Rangers, I think, have that right now, I think Pittsburgh’s getting that. That, to me, is so important.”
However, Pederson did acknowledge that this team, good as it has been this season, has some noticeable flaws, particularly with regards to depth, something that Pederson feels needs to be addressed at the deadline.
“I need to see a left-handed defenseman, that’s what I need to see first,” Pederson said. “Then I think I’d like to see a winger up front who could come in and play. Maybe a top-nine type of forward, a top-six is going to be hard to get, but maybe a top-nine who could take Peverley’s space in that third line, which would allow him, if need be, to go up and take Horton’s position.”
Following are more highlights from the conversation. To hear the interview, go to the Mut & Merloni audio on demand page .
On how the Bruins’ concussions may affect any deadline moves: “The problem, too, to take it one step further is that if you do get them back, are they going to be fragile? It’s one of those types of injuries [where] you just don’t know if you’re one hit away, if you’re one nick away from suffering a recurrence of that concussion. I think not only do you have to think of both Horton and [Johnny] Boychuk coming back, but do I need some insurance, even if they do come back, just in case they’re unable to perform in the playoffs.”
On if he’d be surprised to see the Bruins trade goalie Tuukka Rask : “It would. I feel they’re in pretty good shape there. Again, these types of big deals normally happen more in the summertime than they do at the trade deadline. Part of the other thing that we’ve seen over the years is there are more bad deals made than good deals made. Even if you do make a good deal and you have to give up so much, there’s no guarantee, as we know, come playoff time that you’re going to be able to be successful. You’re one hot goaltender, one injury, one bad matchup, one seventh-game bounce going the other way on you from being eliminated. And if you give up too much in your organization, you can be rebuilding for years to come.”