Bruins’ 2022-23 Trade Targets: San Jose Sharks

At the time of this writing, the Boston Bruins have a 21-4-1 record and are tied with the New Jersey Devils for the most points in the NHL. Naturally, this means that they will be buyers at the trade deadline, and one team that they should consider doing business with is the San Jose Sharks. It was reported earlier this season (Oct. 27) by Pierre LeBrun that the Sharks are willing to hear offers for anyone but Tomas Hertl, so they are surely set to be sellers. Thus, let’s now look at three trade targets that could make sense for the Bruins.

Timo Meier

Timo Meier is the big fish that the Bruins should consider making a push for. The 26-year-old winger is once again having a very good season with San Jose, as he has 14 goals and 27 points in 30 games. Adding another player with point-per-game potential would be massive for the Bruins, so it would be wise for general manager (GM) Don Sweeney to have Meier on his radar as we inch closer to the deadline.

Timo Meier San Jose Sharks
Timo Meier, San Jose Sharks (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

If the Bruins acquired Meier, he would make their top nine truly unstoppable. He could replace Pavel Zacha at the second-line left wing spot or even take over Trent Frederic’s right wing role on the third line. Either way, he would make the Bruins’ offense significantly more dangerous, and it could be enough for them to be labeled as legitimate favorites for the Stanley Cup. Furthermore, he would be guaranteed to receive power-play time because of his elite offense and solid net-front presence ability.

With the Bruins’ core getting older, they must go all-in to try and bring the Stanley Cup back to Boston. Acquiring Meier could be exactly what helps them do that. Yet, he certainly would not come at a cheap price, and this is especially true when noting that the Sharks would likely need to retain some of his salary. As a result, a package of Frederic, Craig Smith, Brett Harrison, and Boston’s 2023 first-round pick could be enough to make this move come to fruition.

Jaycob Megna

The Sharks haven’t had too many things to cheer about this season, but one player who has been a pleasant surprise for them is Jaycob Megna. After spending several seasons split between the NHL and American Hockey League (AHL), his solid defensive play has earned him a spot on the Sharks’ top pairing with star Erik Karlsson. Although he wouldn’t have that large of a role with the Bruins, he certainly would be a decent player to pick up. This is especially true when noting that he has an easily affordable $762,500 cap hit until the end of the 2023-24 season.

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If the Bruins acquired Megna, he could be their new seventh defenseman. It’s rather unlikely that he would be able to force Derek Forbort out of the lineup, but he would be an excellent depth option when injuries inevitably arise. Although the 6-foot-6 defenseman is not the most dominant when it comes to offense (eight assists in 28 games), his reliable defensive play and immense physicality would make him a welcomed addition to Boston’s group. This could also make him receive penalty-killing time when utilized.

To acquire Megna, I wonder if the Bruins would be willing to send Jakub Zboril the other way in a one-for-one swap. The 2015 first-round pick has lost his spot in Boston’s top six, and perhaps a change of scenery could help him find his groove. In 13 games this season, the 25-year-old defenseman has one goal and a minus-1 rating.

Matt Nieto

As the Bruins learned during the 2021 NHL Postseason, you can never have too much depth. As the season carries on, injuries only seem to increase, so I’d argue that they should look to add another depth forward to their group before the deadline. Matt Nieto stands out as a solid option from San Jose, as he comes with a good amount of NHL experience and is having a solid start to the year. In 28 games thus far, he has six goals to go along with five assists.

Matt Nieto San Jose Sharks
Matt Nieto, San Jose Sharks (Amy Irvin / The Hockey Writers)

If the Bruins acquired Nieto, he could serve as the club’s 13th forward. It is rather unlikely that he could force players like Nick Foligno and A.J. Greer out of the lineup, but he certainly would work well filling in for injured players. He has shown this season with San Jose that he can fit on virtually any line because of it. With that, his solid two-way play could allow him to receive both power-play and penalty-killing time if the Bruins need a bit of a spark.

To acquire Nieto, it would likely cost the Bruins only a fifth-round pick. Overall, that is not too outrageous of a price for the veteran winger, so perhaps we could see them make a push for him. He also carries an easily affordable $850,000 cap hit for the year, so the Bruins would not have much trouble fitting him in financially.

Alas, the Bruins have some rather interesting trade targets from the Sharks worth considering. Out of the bunch, Meier would be the major splash, but it wouldn’t be bad for Boston to add some depth by bringing in either Megna or Nieto. Nevertheless, let’s see if these two clubs end up striking a deal before the 2023 Trade Deadline passes.

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