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According to multiple reports, including the Boston Globe’s Fluto Shinzawa, it appears the rumors that have been swirling for weeks might actually become a reality. Tomas Kaberle, very shortly, could be coming to Boston to join the Bruins’ blue line brigade.
Several current Bruins have heard their names mentioned in rumors lately, with the league’s trade deadline just over a week away on February 28th. We’ve heard names like Blake Wheeler, Mark Stuart, Johnny Boychuk, and Michael Ryder all possibilities to be sent packing, not to mention some of the “Baby B’s” toiling away down in Providence.
From Boston.com’s Bruins Blog, Shinzawa writes that the Kaberle deal is “all but done,” citing a league source. This anonymous source indicates that Boston would send center Joe Colborne and their own 2011 first round draft pick in return. Boston currently has two picks in the first round of the ’11 draft, with them owning Toronto’s pick from the Phil Kessel deal.
Colborne, also a first round pick of the Bruins back in 2008, is third on the P-Bruins with 26 points (12G, 14A) this season. The former University of Denver standout has yet to make his debut at the NHL level, and with other centers like Tyler Seguin, Zach Hamill, and the recently acquired Chris Kelly creating a log-jam ahead of Colborne on the team’s depth chart, it seems as if the youngster will be the odd man out in the organization.
As for Kaberle, the 32-year-old defenseman from the Czech Republic has played his entire NHL career with Toronto. He has appeared in all 58 of the team’s games so far this season, leading the team with 35 assists, with 22 of those coming on the power play. With Marc Savard out for the rest of the season, Kaberle should step in to quarterback the team’s top power play unit going forward, while also filling the team’s void as a much-needed “PMD,” puck-moving defenseman. He could be just a rental however, as Kaberle is set to become an unrestricted free agent at season’s end.
If this deal is to ultimately go through however, it would require another cap-clearing transaction to be made by GM Peter Chiarelli. Through much of the week, it has been reported that the Chicago Blackhawks have a serious interest in defenseman Mark Stuart. That move, or another, could come soon after this Kaberle deal is made official.
Otherwise, if cap space can’t be cleared, it’s possible that this deal with Toronto could again be squashed, or at least be put back on hold.