The Boston Bruins would love to explore the idea of keeping forward Tyler Bertuzzi on the roster for next season. A pending UFA, Bertuzzi was acquired ahead of this season’s NHL Trade Deadline and was among the more useful forwards for the team in an otherwise disappointing first-round playoff exit at the hands of the Florida Panthers. Amidst what is likely to be an offseason with plenty of change, Bertuzzi is a player the Bruins feel might be a useful part of their core moving forward.
But, as of yet, the Bruins and Bertuzzi’s camp have not talked about a contract extension.
According to Bertuzzi’s agent, Todd Reynolds, he has not held any talks with the team regarding his client’s future. As per a tweet from Matt Porter of the Boston Globe, Reynolds stated that Bertuzzi was “very positive” about his time with the Bruins and would be open to staying, but understands the stress of cap implications for the Bruins and that an extension might be unlikely.
The Bruins will have lots to think about. Do Patrice Bergeron and David Krejci return? If so, what do you pay them considering they’re already going to be taking a big chunk of next season’s cap thanks to this season’s performance bonuses? Do the Bruins try to shop someone like Taylor Hallin trade? Fluto Shinzawa of The Athletic writes in a recent mailbag article that “It’s possible” the Bruins try to move the winger. He adds, “Hall is 31. At that age, forwards are always at risk of decline.” He also notes that it would be the Bruins’ preference to retain Bertuzzi if it came down to having to choose between him and Hall. He adds, “Very unlikely they can afford to keep [Tyler] Bertuzzi, even if they trade Hall. I think they would rather bring back Bertuzzi because he is three years younger.”
Bertuzzi tied for the team lead in playoff scoring with 10 points in seven games in their first-round loss and he’s made himself quite attractive to other teams when it comes to free agency. If the Bruins are going to want to retain his service, they’ll need to pay to do so. And, after such a heartbreaking exit, the lack of success the Bruins found this season won’t provide extra motivation for free agents to stick around.
As for whether he’s considering staying, Bertuzzi said he’s not even thought about it yet. He needed to wrap his head around the playoff loss first and would go from there.
Next: Aggressive Trade Bids Coming to the Team That Wins Connor Bedard Lottery
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