…we hardly knew ya.
After three years of ups and downs with Phil Kessel, the Bruins have traded the winger to the Toronto Maple Leafs. TSN.ca reported it about an hour ago but it has been confirmed to me by the Bruins. Since being drafted as the #5 overall pick in 2006, Kessel has fought the injury bug while developing into a budding superstar goal scorer.
The bones of the deal look like this:
To Boston: 2010 1st and 2nd round picks, 2011 1st round pick
To Toronto: Kessel
My opinion – this is a great move by the Bruins. They keep the majority of their 2008/09 team that, as we all know, ran away from the majority of the league. Yes, Marc Savard loses “his little brother” but with Marco Sturm coming back from injury, the Bruins should be able to make up 20-25 of Kessel's 36 goals he scored last year with that one player alone. With the team $1.7M below the salary cap, this deal means no one else HAS TO GO. Whether Peter Chiarelli chooses to move one or more of these draft picks plus a player, that will remain to be seen.
For the Maple Leafs, they get a 21 year old kid on the verge of exploding in this league. I think Brian Burke will have to find a #1 center to feed him the puck as I don't think the current crop of centers in Toronto are as capable as Savvy is for the Bruins. I also am not sure it's the right way to rebuild. The Leafs are talking about making the playoffs this upcoming season but realistically, this 2010 #1 pick could be a top ten pick.
Press conference at the Garden tomorrow morning at 11:00
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Written by Jim Mulligan