December 1, 2011

Bruins not trading Krejci after all

By Jesse Connolly

Had you read every recent tweet involving David Krejci prior to waking up this morning, you’d have been convinced the Czech pivot was no longer in the Bruins’ long-term plans.

With Anaheim free-falling out West, rumors began to swirl that high-scoring winger Bobby Ryan was on the outs. Many believed the B’s were the perfect trading partner, with Krejci being the centerpiece of the deal.

So much for that idea?

The Bruins announced this morning that they’ve inked the 25-year-old center to a contract extension. Multiple sources have reported that it’s a three-year deal worth an average of $5.25 million per season.

Those who find Krejci’s oft-inconsistent play during the regular season maddening aren’t crazy. Boston’s first-line forward, who has proven to be tremendously clutch in the postseason (and could’ve easily won the Conn Smythe were it not for Tim Thomas’ heroics), has admitted to being bored by the first 82 games of the campaign. Not exactly a quality you want a player you’re banking on leading you to the promised land to possess.

But to think that the organization had completely soured on No. 46, then suddenly had a change of heart after his three-point night against Toronto on Wednesday, is simply cuckoo for cocoa puffs.

And for those balking at the thought of a $5.25 million dollar price tag, I must ask: Were you asleep during the free agent frenzy this summer? Did you miss the Habs signing 33-year-old Erik Cole to a four-year deal for an average of $4.5 million per season? How about the Panthers inking Tomas Fleischmann for the same cap hit through 2014-15? Is $5.25 million that ludicrous for Krejci?

Others also cite that the Bruins will now suddenly be in a crisis when the 2012-13 season ends. Peter Chiarelli will have a boatload of work to do with Milan LucicTyler Seguin and Brad Marchand among the team’s crop of restricted free agents, as well as with Nathan Horton, who will hit UFA status that summer. However, Krejci’s deal is believed to only have a limited no-trade clause in his second and third seasons, meaning Chiarelli is certainly free to find a suitor for Krejci’s services if things aren’t going according to plan.

But, perhaps most important in all of this is the fact that the Bruins GM has proven quite adept at keeping an eye on the future and signing his key cogs to deals that end up looking quite fair in the long run. Don’t be surprised if the same goes for Krejci.