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Well, it’s only day two of the NHL free agency, and already things are getting a little intense. Day one of the free agency showed us several moves that occurred impacting the Boston Bruins, which leads one to believe that there is more to come.
1. Money talks– One of many signings to occur this week was Jarome Iginla leaving the Boston Bruins and heading west, where he signed a 3-year, $16 million dollar deal with the Colorado Avalanche. This was a very risky move on the part of the Avalanche, as Iginla just turned 37. However, Iginla seemed to display a somewhat of a resurgence after coming to the Bruins (he tallied 30 goals and had 31 assists in his 78 games played).
Iginla brought a high level of offense and off-ice leadership to the team and Iginla will be a forced to be reckoned with during his time in Colorado.
2. Wasting away in margaritaville- The other former Bruin to sign elsewhere, to no one’s surprise, was Shawn Thornton. Thornton had a very minimal impact on the Bruins last year, with only 5 goals and 3 assists in the 64 games he played. Thornton was quickly picked up by the Florida Panthers, where he signed a two year deal worth $2.6 million. Thornton’s size and fighting abilities will be missed, but his lack of offensive impact made the decision easy for Peter Chiarelli and company.
3. Between the pipes- Finally, the other departure here was by goaltender Chad Johnson, who signed a two year deal with the New York Islanders worth $2.6 million. The Bruins had already signed Niklas Svedberg to a one year deal worth $600,000, thus cementing their backup role. Additionally, the Bruins also signed goaltender Jeremy Smith to a one year deal worth $550,000 in NHL terms and $80,000 if he plays in the AHL.
Overall, the NHL free agency has already had some major moves that have impacted many teams. The biggest blow to the Bruins is the loss of Iginla, and it will be interesting to see how they bounce back this offseason.