The Boston Bruins have had quite the interesting offseason thus far.
After an unceremonious second-round exit in the Stanley Cup playoffs last season at the hands of the New York Islanders, the Bruins quickly found themselves looking ahead towards next year. As it turns out, they have wasted little time in getting things going for the 2021-22 National Hockey League campaign.
Here is a recap of the four biggest news items that took place for the Black and Gold this summer:
The retirement of Kevan Miller – The 33-year-old defenseman had played just 28 games since shattering his kneecap back in 2019. Miller skated in 352 games over the course of eight seasons with the Bruins, scoring 13 goals and recording 58 assists. He was the epitome of what it took to don the B’s sweater, and he became a fan favorite throughout his time in Boston. Forever a Bruin.
Brandon Carlo contract extension – The organization signed Carlo to a six-year, $24.6 contract extension, a deal that will carry an annual cap hit of $4.1 million. Although he has struggled with concussions throughout his short career, he is arguably the team’s best shutdown defenseman. Carlo, a 2015 second-round draft pick for Boston, was a restricted free agent heading into this offseason. His penalty-killing ability is among the best in the league. Carlo also has the capability to log ample minutes and shut down the opposition’s top forwards. Great re-singing.
Taylor Hall contract extension – This is a deal that really works out for both sides. The 29-year-old pending free agent sorted out a contract with the Bruins that is for four years and worth $24 million. After coming over from the Buffalo Sabres at the trade deadline last season, Hall has been exactly what the Bruins have been looking for on the second line. Hall recorded eight goals and 14 points in 16 regular-season games, while adding three goals and five points in 11 playoff games. Both Hall and the Bruins had stated right from the beginning that the feeling was mutual in working out a deal. A perfect fit for both the player and team.
The loss of Jeremy Lauzon in the Expansion Draft – The Seattle Kraken plucked away Lauzon from the Bruins earlier this week as a building block on the blue line. With a relatively cheap contract and plenty of NHL experience, Lauzon seemed destined to head to Seattle. He is someone who has the ability to kill penalties and be a physical presence on the left side. The Kraken selected a good one. Tough blow.
Free agency begins across the NHL on July 28, so we will see if the Bruins make any splashes. The B’s also possess the No. 21 overall pick in the 2021 NHL Entry Draft, which takes places over the course of the next two days (July 23-24).