The Boston Bruins already knew they were not going to retain center Carl Soderberg, so it made sense to trade the rights of the restricted free agent. They did so yesterday, shipping him to the Colorado Avalanche for a sixth round pick in the 2016 draft.
Being in cap jail, the Bruins can’t actually make a ton of moves. They face this dilemma with fellow restricted free agent Dougie Hamilton. However, their drafting hasn’t exactly been top notch, either, leading them to this salary predicament anyways.
Colorado wasted no time, signing Soderberg to a five year deal with an annual salary of $4.75. He also gets a full no trade clause over the first two years of the deal.
Soderberg has had a rather fascinating career. He was drafted by the St Louis Blues, but he didn’t want to leave his home country of Sweden. The Bruins traded for his rights and finally persuaded him to come to the states in 2013. He was a part of the team that played the Chicago Blackhawks in the Stanley Cup finals.
The 29 year old averages around 45 points per season, but the Avs are a much more wide open team than the Bruins, so he might get more scoring opportunities. Soderberg is a pass first player but has a terrific shot, and if he can play on a line with elite talent, makes players around him better.
Of course, this signing is creating a frenzy in Colorado that the Avalanche won’t retain center Ryan O’Reilly. But for the Bruins, this is yet another move that just makes the team worse.
Recent sixth round picks in the Bruins history include Anton Blidh, Matthew Benning, Rob O’Garra, Zane McIntyre, and Tyler Randell. The only one from this group with much promise is McIntyre, who dominated college hockey as the goalie for North Dakota and has a shot at cracking the roster in his rookie season.
Some noteable sixth round picks in Bruins history include Andrew Alberts, Andre Roy, Bob Sweeney, Mike Krushelnyski, and Matti Hagman.
Basically, the Bruins gave up Soderberg for almost nothing to improve their roster. This is the dilemma they will face all off season, and the team has already gotten worse. Maybe they will use Ryan Spooner, who played rather well in the second half of last season, to replace him.
If only they had more young players to take on roles with the NHL roster.
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