NHL Trade Rumors: Bruins Must Acquire Rick Nash to Fix Abysmal Power Play
"Blue Jackets TV play-by-play guy, Jeff Rimer, reported on one of the local radio stations that the Bruins were preparing a “major” offer for the former No. 1 overall pick."
The radio station Rimer went on was 97.1 The Fan in Columbus.
Should the Bruins make a strong offer for Nash?
It is not surprising that Nash would be a target of the Bruins since he is an elite power forward and a reliable goal scorer. It is hard to imagine Nash not easily adapting to the Bruins' brand of hockey.
Boston has fantastic depth at the center position, but lack an elite offensive player on the wings outside of young star Tyler Seguin, whose natural position is center.
The Bruins power play was absolutely awful in the playoffs this season, and it was a major reason why the team's season ended in disappointing fashion to the Washington Capitals in the first round.
Boston was 2-23 on the power play in the Capitals series and need someone with the physical and goal-scoring presence that Nash brings to the ice.
Milan Lucic is a similar player to Nash, but Lucic has underperformed severely in the playoffs over the past two seasons. His ability to be productive offensively in the playoffs is starting to become a real concern.
An issue with Nash coming to Boston is his gigantic $7.8 million salary cap hit for the next six seasons. Would a team like the Bruins that has historically not liked to pay players more than captains like Ray Bourque acquire Nash's massive contract?
I do not think that's a major issue any more, but the Bruins would have to move salary to fit under the salary cap if they trade for Nash. As Haggerty points out, the contracts of center David Krejci and goaltender Tim Thomas would probably have to be involved in any Nash deal for salary purposes.
The Bruins have interest in Nash as most every other team in the NHL would if they could clear out of the $7.8 million in cap space required to bring the forward onto a new team. That would mean the Bruins would need to move a player in the $5 million salary cap hit neighborhood (David Krejci, Tim Thomas) before even thinking about bringing in such a heavy hitter.
Young players such as Lucic, young goalie Tuukka Rask and prospects Dougie Hamilton and Jared Knight would likely be players that the Blue Jackets would consider asking for in any Nash trade.
Acquiring Nash and parting with young assets would be a risk for the Bruins, but it is certainly not a big one. Nash has scored 30 or more goals in five consecutive seasons and has also reached the 40-goal mark twice. All of this happened with Nash having lackluster centers giving him passes.
The Bruins need more offense for their struggling power play and would be wise to make a bold trade for Nash and become the favorites to win the Stanley Cup next season.
Nicholas Goss is a Boston Bruins Featured Columnist for Bleacher Report and has covered the team firsthand since the 2010-11 season. He was also the organization's on-site reporter for the 2011 Stanley Cup Final in Boston.
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