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 CSNNE.com 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