Source: More than two teams interested in Shattenkirk

Source: More than two teams interested in Shattenkirk

St. Louis Blues defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk remains as one of the remaining viable alternatives for the Black and Gold on the trade market as other moves and signings keep taking names off the Bruins’ big board. The Bruins will have company, however, as the Edmonton Oilers have also expressed interest to the Blues in the puck-moving defenseman, according to a source.

That same hockey source also indicated that the Philadelphia Flyers will be entering the Shattenkirk sweepstakes as well, and that would make at least three teams Don Sweeney could get into a bidding war with for the All-Star defenseman.

That’s not ideal for a team like the Bruins that doesn’t have a lot of options with Sami Vatanen, Tyson Barrie, Alex Goligoski and Keith Yandle all potentially off the board at this point. Clearly both the Coyotes and Panthers could enter the fray for the Blues D-man as well if they can't work out deals with Goligoski and Yandle, respectively. 

The 27-year-old Shattenkirk would be a perfect for a Bruins team in need of a transitional defenseman. He posted 14 goals and 44 points in 72 games for the Blues, and was solid in the postseason with two goals and 11 points in 20 games after shaking a tough opening round series against the Blackhawks. The Connecticut native is a smooth puck-mover, has been a dangerous, productive point player on the power play throughout his NHL career, and could skate with Zdeno Chara to once again give the B’s at least a respectable top pairing.

Even better, sources have indicated to that Boston is a geographically desirable place for Shattenkirk to potentially sign a contract extension given his desire to play on the East Coast following this upcoming season.  He’s familiar with the city of Boston after winning a national championship with Boston University back in 2007, and clearly wouldn’t take much convincing to return to the Hub as a pro player.

The real sticking point will be the cost for a guy like Shattenkirk.

The Bruins have dangled the 29th overall pick in the 2016 draft plus a prospect/player (think Frank Vatrano, or Ryan Spooner-level) to land their defensemen targets, but it might take more given the other teams wooing St. Louis GM Doug Armstrong. The Blues might demand the 14th overall pick from the Bruins plus a Spooner/Vatrano player asset, and that could potentially knock the Black and Gold out of the running for a couple of coveted draft targets in Dante Fabbro or Charlie McAvoy.

“[The Bruins] need another puck mover…that’s for sure,” said one NHL talent evaluator. “If they can get [Shattenkirk] inked to an extension, then the deal makes some sense for them. But if not then that’s a bit rich.”

Perhaps it will be Shattenkirk to the Bruins with Boston clearly the lead dog in the sweepstakes for the Blues defenseman, but the competition for him is clearly why they’re also talking to teams like Florida about players like Dmitry Kulikov as well. 

Joe Haggerty can be followed on Twitter: @HacksWithHaggs

The banged up Bruins have two more injured players in Nash, McQuaid

The banged up Bruins have two more injured players in Nash, McQuaid

BOSTON – It’s another day and another injured player, or two, for the Boston Bruins.

Veteran right winger Rick Nash was a late scratch for the Bruins on Monday night against the Blue Jackets after getting banged up in last weekend’s win over the Tampa Bay Lightning, and Bruins defenseman Adam McQuaid had to exit due to injury in the third period of Monday night’s 5-4 overtime loss at TD Garden.  

“[Nash] got hit in Tampa, so we thought he was fine. He had an upper-body injury,” said Bruce Cassidy. “This morning, pregame skate, we thought he’d be fine, and it turned out after pregame skate, early afternoon, he wasn’t. So, you know, we had to make a call for Anton Blidh.”

The Nash absence forced the Bruins to recall Blidh from Providence on emergency recall and plug him into the lineup not using him in the last couple of road games in Florida, and it also pushed 21-year-old rookie Ryan Donato into a top-6 role alongside David Krejci in his NHL debut. Clearly things worked out for Donato with a 1-goal, 3-point performance in his first NHL game, and that along with some quality organizational depth is helping them withstand some of the injuries.

McQuaid was held to just 10:42 of ice time that was the fewest among all Bruins D-men on Monday night, but it was unclear exactly what befell him on the ice injury-wise.  

It is getting a little ridiculous for a Bruins team that’s missing Patrice Bergeron (fractured right foot), Zdeno Chara (upper body), Jake DeBrusk (upper body), Charlie McAvoy (sprained left MCL), David Backes (right leg laceration) and now may have to go without Nash (upper body) and McQuaid (undisclosed) as well. Clearly it’s something the Bruins will have to play through for the time being while simply hoping that it all conveniently clears up ahead of the Stanley Cup playoffs. 

“You know, you call a player up [from the AHL], right? We signed one out of college; that helped. So, that’s it. [The injuries] are uncontrollable to a certain extent. It’s kind of enough, now. I would agree. We’ve had our share, so let’s get these guys healthy and get ready to play,” said Cassidy. “I don’t know. You’ve got to play the game in front of you and you just hope the string of, kind of, tough luck, is over.

“That’s it. It’s a physical game. We’ve said all along, to have successful seasons, both regular and playoffs, you need a certain level of health. That’s what we’re hoping, that these guys come back, and that’s it. Until then, we plug the holes and play the game in front of you.”

Plugging those holes will continue to get more and more challenging if the Bruins keep losing players from their lineup on a nightly basis as they may have on Monday with both Nash and McQuaid now banged up as well.


NBC Sports Boston Breakfast Pod: Donato impresses in NHL debut

NBC Sports Boston Photo

NBC Sports Boston Breakfast Pod: Donato impresses in NHL debut

1:13 - Joe Haggerty joins from the TD Garden to discuss the non-call on Brad Marchand’s breakaway, Ryan Donato shining in his NHL debut, and when Patrice Bergeron could be returning.

6:16 - Gary Tanguay, Mike Giardi, and Trenni Kusnierek debate if the Patriots are starting to replace the talent they’ve lost this offseason as they have acquired Adrian Clayborn, Jeremy Hill, and Jason McCourty. 

11:01 - A. Sherrod Blakely joins Boston Sports Tonight to talk about the Celtics continuing to struggle as the injuries have piled up.