In this edition of Boston Bruins News & Rumors, the Dallas Stars want to accommodate John Klingberg’s trade request ahead of the deadline, and the Bruins are said to be interested. In other news, Karson Kuhlman was claimed by the Seattle Kraken after being placed on waivers Sunday. Meanwhile, goaltender Tuukka Rask made his long-awaited season debut this past Thursday versus the Philadelphia Flyers. Last but not least, many were upset in regards to Brad Marchand’s All-Star Game snub, but the 12-year veteran isn’t letting it bother him.
Klingberg to Boston?
Just over a week ago, reports came forward that Klingberg requested a trade from the Stars. Those reports appear to be true, and the team hopes to move him in the near future. At just 29 years old, Klingberg is right in the prime of his career, and has a cap hit of just $4.25 million that is set to expire after this season.
As you would expect, many teams are interested in the Swedish rearguard, and one of them is the Bruins. Jim Murphy of Boston Hockey Now recently wrote an article in regards to the team’s interest, saying that an NHL source with direct knowledge of the situation confirmed the legitimacy of the interest but said the cost to acquire Klingberg won’t come cheap.
“Big. At least three components,” the source said. “Top-end stuff.”
Whether or not the Bruins are willing to meet the Stars’ hefty asking price remains to be seen, but there is no denying how well he could fit in on this roster. Not only is he capable of producing plenty of points from the back end, but his defensive play is quite solid as well.
Kuhlman Headed to Seattle
On Sunday, the Bruins announced that they placed Kuhlman on waivers. The decision didn’t come as a major surprise given that the 26-year-old has been given limited minutes in just 19 games on the season. While there are elements to his game that certainly benefit the Bruins, the fact of the matter is he produced just two points in 19 games.
Kuhlman’s demotion is likely a direct result of the play of Oskar Steen, who has been solid since being recalled earlier this month. In 11 total games on the season, he has a goal and four assists. On Monday, he was picked up by the Kraken, a team that has struggled so far in their inaugural season. It will be a great opportunity for Kuhlman to carve out more of a role for himself than he would have ever gotten with the Bruins.
Rask Makes Season Debut
After signing a one-year deal on Jan. 11, Rask made his season debut with the Bruins just two days later. While some expected rust from the 34-year-old who hadn’t played since last June, that wasn’t the case, as he turned aside 25 of 27 shots in a 3-2 win. After the game, he spoke with the media about the warm reception he got from the fans at TD Garden.
“It was (emotional),” Rask said. “It was very much out of the normal, I guess, the way I was feeling before the game, (Wednesday) especially. I’m not used to this gameday routine. It’s been many months since the last game, so (being the backup Wednesday) definitely helped that. I kind of got the experience of the gameday. Then, obviously today, playing. It was great to see the fans’ support, the best fans.”
With the return of Rask, the Bruins sent Jeremy Swayman down to the American Hockey League. It is an unfortunate break for the young netminder who had played well to begin the season, but given that he was exempt from the waiver wire, it made him expendable over Linus Ullmark.
Marchand Snubbed From All-Star Game
There have been few players in the NHL who have had better 2021-22 seasons to this point than Marchand, who currently sits eighth in league scoring with 43 points. Despite the great start to the year, however, he wasn’t selected for the All-Star Game. Rightfully so, Bruins fans were quite upset regarding the situation, but it doesn’t seem to be bothering Marchand whatsoever.
“I’m not bothered at all,” Marchand told reporters on Friday. “It’s a nice event to go to some years. Depends on where it is, but Vegas is obviously a good spot.”
Even if he isn’t being completely honest about how he feels, there is no doubt that he is happy for the Bruin who did get selected — Patrice Bergeron.
“Bergy’s been our best player for 18 years now,” Marchand said. “He’s the best two-way player in the league. He’s the backbone to our team. I’m not surprised at all that he’s there. He deserves to be, and he’s earned that right. I’m very happy for him.”
The Bruins have been red hot lately, winning five straight games, and both Marchand and Bergeron are a big part of that. As Marchand mentioned, Bergeron’s defensive play remains elite, and his offensive game hasn’t slowed down at all either as he currently sits with 30 points through 34 games.
Up Next for the Bruins
The Bruins will look to continue their win streak in their next game on Tuesday, though it won’t be an easy feat as they play one of the best teams in the entire league in the Carolina Hurricanes. They will then take on the Washington Capitals Thursday, followed by the Winnipeg Jets on Saturday to finish off their week.
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Colton Pankiw is a former Jr. A hockey player who now provides his knowledge of the game through writing. He’s been a very active and reliable source for nearly two years at The Hockey Writers. He is a credentialed writer for the Calgary Flames but also does features on other teams throughout the league. Other writing contributions include: Yahoo Sports, Las Vegas Chronicle, Oil On Whyte, and Markerzone.com. Colton is also a co-host of both Oilers Overtime and Flames Faceoff podcasts. Any interview requests or content info can be made through him on Twitter. Take a look at his work here.