|Michael Ryder chooses Devils over Bruins||07.05.13 at 6:53 pm ET|
According to Rich Chere of NJ.com, free agent forward Michael Ryder signed a two-year, $7 million contract with the Devils Friday after reportedly being in talks with both the Devils and Bruins.
With Ryder off the market, 36-year-old Jarome Iginla remains the best available option on the right wing market. The Bruins are in search of a first-line right wing after losing Nathan Horton, Rich Peverley, Tyler Seguin and likely Jaromir Jagr thus far this offseason.
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|Nathan Horton signs seven-year deal with Blue Jackets||at 12:59 pm ET|
Free agent forward Nathan Horton signed a seven-year, $37.1 million deal with the Blue Jackets on the first day of free agency. The contract carries an annual cap hit of $5.3 million.
Horton had informed the Bruins after three seasons with them that he was not interested in returning to the team, as he was seeking a different environment for his family. Though the right wing struggled with consistency and saw two of his three seasons with the B’s ended early by concussions, he played a major role in their two trips to the Stanley Cup finals, scoring 15 goals and adding 21 assists in 43 career playoff games, all with the Bruins.
Asked at his introductory why he chose to leave the Bruins, Horton said that he didn’t enjoy city life and wanted a quieter place for his family.
“I’m thankful for my opportunity in Boston,” Horton, a father of two, said. “I’m very thankful. I met a lot of great people. I had great teammates and had a great time there.
“I just think being in the city, it’a great opportunity to be in a house with a little more quiet. It’s what I was looking for, and an opportunity like that is here.”
The contract sees a bump in both term and cap hit from his previous deal, which was a six-year deal with $4 million a year.
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|Bruins trade doesn’t change Nathan Horton’s mind about leaving||07.04.13 at 4:55 pm ET|
Following the trade of Tyler Seguin to the Stars, the agent for Nathan Horton indicated that the Bruins’ recently freed-up cap space does not change Horton’s mind about his decision to not re-sign with the Bruins.
Horton’s agent, Paul Krepelka, told WEEI.com that the trade of Seguin and Rich Peverley — which leaves the B’s with over $13 million in cap space if they put Marc Savard on long-term injury reserve — “doesn’t change anything,” and that Horton’s choice to leave Boston “was a personal decision based on what he feels is best for his family.”
With Seguin, Horton, Jaromir Jagr and and Peverley gone, Shawn Thornton is the only right wing from last year’s team still on the roster.
Horton met with the Blue Jackets on Wednesday and should draw interest from multiple teams on the free agent market.
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|Agent: Nathan Horton won’t be back with Bruins||06.29.13 at 2:45 pm ET|
Agent Paul Krepelka confirmed to WEEI.com Saturday that Nathan Horton has informed the Bruins he will not return to the team next season. TSN was the first to report the story.
Horton will hit unrestricted free agency when it opens next week and will has his pick of teams as one of the top free agents on the open market. The Bruins acquired Horton prior to their Stanley Cup-winning season in 2010-11, with Horton playing a large role in delivering Boston the Cup. Yet the sides never exchanged offers about a new contract before Horton informed the B’s of his decision. Given that Tuukka Rask still has to be signed, it was unlikely the Bruins would have had salary cap space to give Horton a fair contract without trading another player. Multiple outlets reported Saturday that the team is shopping right wing Tyler Seguin.
In three seasons with the Bruins, Horton had 56 goals and 51 assists for 107 points in 169 regular season games. It was the postseason where he stepped up his game the most, as he had 15 goals and 21 assists for 36 points in 43 playoff games for the B’s.
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|Bruins won’t sign Jaromir Jagr or Andrew Ference, hope to keep Nathan Horton||06.26.13 at 1:19 pm ET|
Breakup day often means the last day with a team for certain players, and the Bruins have a few.
Bruins general manager notified free agents Jaromir Jagr, Andrew Ference and Jay Pandolfo that they will not be re-signed by the team during Wednesday’s exit meetings. Ference and Jagr both told the media earlier that they didn’t expect to be back.
“I don’t think I will,” Jagr said. “Maybe if I would score 20 goals in the playoffs, it would be a different story. I was 20 short.”
Chiarelli told Nathan Horton that the team hopes to sign him and said that he will not be using amnesty buyouts. The Bruins’ cap situation will be very tight, even with Tuukka Rask and Horton the team’s priority free agents. Assuming they put Marc Savard on long-term injury reserve, the Bruins will have $9,180,833 to sign Rask and fill two forward spots, one of which they hope is Horton, as well as figure out backup goaltending plans. He did not rule out trading one of the team’s more substantial contracts as a means of opening up some cap space.
“We’ll find the right mix,” Chiarelli said, “but we do have some hard decisions to make, including deciding on re-signing players and deciding on retaining players.”
On other free agents, the team will take a wait-and-see approach with defenseman Wade Redden, while they have told backup goalie Anton Khudobin that they will address his situation once Rask is under contract.
|Barry Pederson on D&C: Bruins ‘are going to be a good team for a long time’||06.25.13 at 10:05 am ET|
NESN analyst Barry Pederson, in an interview on the Dennis & Callahan show, identified a number of roster decisions that now face the Bruins following their elimination in a Game 6 loss to the Blackhawks. Still, Pederson suggested that the team’s long-term outlook remains excellent.
With a number of young, still-improving talents like Tyler Seguin, Matt Bartkowski and Dougie Hamilton, Pederson suggested that if Boston can re-sign restricted free agent Tuukka Rask and lock up Patrice Bergeron — who now has one year left in his contract — to an extension, the team has the core to continue to build upon its run of two Stanley Cup Finals and one championship in the last three years.
He emphasized the need for players like Tyler Seguin, Carl Soderberg and Jordan Caron to get stronger to help carry the Bruins through a 2013-14 season that starts in 13 weeks, but overall, Pederson pointed to a sunny outlook for a team that just endured a devastating defeat. Read the rest of this entry »
|Milan Lucic: ‘This is where players are remembered the most’||06.24.13 at 2:14 pm ET|
Bruins players spoke to a jam-packed room of reporters in comically large media scrums after what might have been their last morning skate of the season. They answered their questions, sounded optimistic, but Milan Lucic sounded tired of his own words. He looked, pretty obviously, like a guy who just wanted to get back on the ice for Game 6.
After all, the Bruins know their situation: Win and it’s Game 7. Lose and it’s over.
“When you’re in a moment like this, there’s definitely nothing to save it for. You don’t come this far to lose, right?” Lucic said. “It would have been easy to quit two months ago in that Game 7 in Toronto to get ourselves through that game. There’s no reason why we can’t dig deep and find a little bit extra to get us through this one.”
Added Lucic: “This is where players are remembered the most. You’ve got to find it within you to do whatever you can. You never know when you’re going to be back in this situation, and you’ve got to make the most of the opportunity that’s given to you. Right now you’ve got to view this as an opportunity and try to do everything you can to force a Game 7.”
The Bruins came back against Toronto in the most unfathomable way possible. If they’re trailing by three goals midway through the third on Monday (or maybe Wednesday), you can bet that they’ll be toast. Still, the lesson in Toronto’s collapse is that anything is possible. Both teams will have the rosters they’ve had throughout the series (Patrice Bergeron and Jonathan Toews are in), so the Bruins don’t need to worry about anything but coming out of Game 6 with a win.
How might they do that? Getting better looks against Corey Crawford would be a start. The B’s outshot the Blackhawks in the early going of Game 5 (the Blackhawks held the overall edge at 32-25), but they didn’t pepper his glove side the way they did when they scored five against him in Game 4. Lucic says the B’s need to take whatever chances they can get.
In general the Bruins could stand to get more out of the top line of Lucic, David Krejci and Nathan Horton. Though they produced a goal in Game 5, the members of the line have yet to score since Lucic’s two-goal performance in Game 1.
Consider the circumstances of their most promising period in a while. The Bruins had the Blachawks on their heels at points in the third period and saw the Krejci line produce a goal, but they were able to do that with Jonathan Toews not in the game. The Krejci line scored against the Bickell – Kruger – Kane line on a Zdeno Chara blast, but given that the Blackhawks were mixing and matching without this season’s Selke winner, the Krejci line played against the Kane line and also Dave Bolland‘s line in the third. Still, you’ll take results either way, and though Chicago got that goal back on a Bolland empty-netter and sealed up Game 5, Krejci was encouraged by his line’s third period.
“I think we had a great third period,” Krejci said. “Maybe the best in the whole finals. We’ve got to try to build on that and bring it to tonight’s game from the first minute to the end.”
Krejci still leads all playoff skaters in a landslide with 25 points (the next guys have 19), but he has yet to go off in the finals like he has in series past — most notably, they could use some production like he had in the first round. After having 13 points (five goals, eight assists) against the Maple Leafs, Krejci has put up four points in each of the last three series: four assists against the Rangers in five games, four goals against the Penguins in four games, and four assists against the Blackhawks through four games.
If the Bruins are to push this to seven, more offensive output from their top line would go a long way.
“We need to do more. We’ve definitely talked about being better,” Lucic said. “We’ve been playing well throughout the whole playoffs, and we’ve talked about [how] there’s no reason we can’t bring our best in situations like this.”
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