Although the Nashville Predators have a 30-18-4 record, they may end up trading their best forward before the trade deadline passes. According to Andy Strickland, they are “actively shopping” Filip Forsberg. The star winger has an expiring contract and is eligible for unrestricted free agency (UFA), so they want to receive something for him rather than lose him for nothing. If they are unable to come to terms on an extension by next month, the Boston Bruins need to look at acquiring him.
Hearing the #Preds are actively shopping superstar Filip Forsberg.— Andy Strickland (@andystrickland) February 24, 2022
A player like Forsberg does not enter the rumor mill very often. When looking at the Bruins’ current forward situation, he also appears to be a perfect fit. Let’s dive into why.
Forsberg Would Give Bruins Another Star
It’s fair to say that the Bruins have some notable stars on their roster. Brad Marchand, Patrice Bergeron, David Pastrnak, and Charlie McAvoy are players every NHL team would love to have. At times, Taylor Hall has shown glimpses of being one too. Yet, after him, there isn’t a skater on their roster who comes close to this description. With the team aiming to be contenders, this is a bit concerning. Adding Forsberg to the group would easily give them another one.
The truth is in Forsberg’s stats. In 39 games this season, he has an impressive 26 goals to go along with 44 total points. It has been a magical run for the 27-year-old, and he is not showing any signs of cooling off. With the Bruins having a lot of issues with their secondary scoring, adding a player like him would be a fantastic way to try and fix it. Keep in mind, they have the least amount of goals out of all playoff-contending teams with only 148. That’s a concerning statistic and one that the Swedish winger would easily help change.
Forsberg Would Improve Bruins’ Top Six
When looking at the Bruins’ current roster, it’s clear that they could use another right-winger. After Pastrnak, the production at the position drops off significantly. Craig Smith has looked far better when utilized on the third line, as he has found instant chemistry with Charlie Coyle and Trent Frederic. Due to this, they currently have Jake DeBrusk playing right wing on the first line. Although he scored two goals in his first game on the line, he struggled significantly at the position last season and is expected to be traded shortly. Thus, it would be wise for them to find a legitimate option for the top six, and Forsberg would be just that.
A trio of Forsberg, Bergeron, and Marchand has the potential to be lethal. It could the team’s new version of the “Perfection Line.” With Hall and Pastrnak proving to be a perfect match, they shouldn’t move the latter back to the top line. Therefore, it would be wise for them to add another strong talent there, and it’s hard to find a better option on the market than Forsberg. Because he is scoring so frequently, he would be their new, much-needed sniper on that line.
Forsberg Would Help Bruins Compete with Division Rivals
Although the Bruins aren’t bad in the slightest, they also have three teams in their division who are ahead of them. The Florida Panthers, Tampa Bay Lightning, and Toronto Maple Leafs are all legitimate contenders. With their current lack of scoring, it’s honestly hard to envision them getting past any of them in a playoff round. Therefore, if they want to make another Stanley Cup run, they will need to improve their roster. Keep in mind, there’s a strong chance they will face off against one of them in the first round.
Acquiring another star like Forsberg would make the Bruins a lot more dangerous. For a team that is struggling to score, they still have managed to win 30 games this season. With that, they are in striking distance of the Maple Leafs, as they trail them by just six points. There is some potential that the Bruins could go on a playoff run, but they need to add a player like Forsberg to make it happen. This is especially true when you remember that the Metropolitan Division has the Carolina Hurricanes, New York Rangers, and Pittsburgh Penguins.
Cost for Forsberg Is Very High
There’s no question that the Predators would rather sign Forsberg to an extension than trade him. He has been their best forward all season and a long-time part of their core. Yet, if there is still no deal before the deadline comes, there’s a good chance he will be dealt. Although the Bruins absolutely should jump into the sweepstakes, it will understandably cost them a lot to successfully acquire him as he’s the best winger reportedly available.
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For a trade to occur, it would automatically have to include their 2022 first-round pick and one of their top prospects. The Bruins would prefer to keep Fabian Lysell, so Jack Studnicka would likely be expendable in a hypothetical swap. With the Predators still in a playoff spot, they also would probably want a proven roster player, too. The most obvious choice is DeBrusk because of his trade request. Because he is still a restricted free agent in the summer, they would probably be open to adding him. This would be a steep price to pay for a rental, but when looking at how good of a player Forsberg is, it should be worth at least contemplating.
Overall, it is fun to think about the Bruins acquiring Forsberg. It’s been reported that they are hoping to improve at right-wing before the deadline passes, as they are currently linked to Phil Kessel as well. The latter is still a good player, but if they want to make a major splash, the former is the one they should be pursuing heavily instead.
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Michael DeRosa is a contributor who covers the Boston Bruins, Chicago Blackhawks, & Detroit Red Wings for The Hockey Writers. Since 2017, he’s written and edited for numerous websites. Besides his work for THW, you can also find him on NHL Trade Rumors.