Bruins

Bruins address goalie depth, sign Max Lagacé to a one-year deal

Bruins address goalie depth, sign Max Lagacé to a one-year deal

Don Sweeney raised some eyebrows when he mentioned that he’d be in the goalie market on July 1, but it was always about a depth organizational signing for the Black and Gold.

The Bruins have signed goalie Max Lagacé away from the Vegas Golden Knights for a one-year, $700,000 two-way deal, per TVA’s Ren Lavoie. The 26-year-old Lagacé has played 17 games for the Golden Knights over the last two seasons with a 6-8-1 record and an .868 save percentage, and will be the No. 1 goaltender for the Providence Bruins while splitting time with young prospects Daniel Vladar and Kyle Keyser.

More importantly, Lagacé will be the third goaltender on the B’s organizational depth chart behind Tuukka Rask and Jaroslav Halak, and will be insurance in case anything happens injury-wise with either of those two players. Lagacé had a strong season with the AHL’s Chicago Wolves last season with a 16-16-2 record along with a .914 save percentage in 33 games, and should be the exact kind of veteran mentor that the P-Bruins need at the AHL level.

Perhaps Lagacé will also play into getting Rask plenty of rest in training camp as the Bruins plan to do after his 24-game workload during the run to the Stanley Cup Final this spring.

“We’ll probably be more cognizant of [getting veteran players some rest] come September and be in a better place and be in a real good place come October because you can’t play uphill. You start on the road, and as I said, you move forward. You have to focus on what’s absolutely necessary,” said Bruins GM Don Sweeney at the end of last week’s Bruins Development Camp. “I think we referenced that [Jaroslav] Halak will be part of that. If you’re really good then you’ll be in a real good spot coming out and maybe he takes the ball earlier in the year. But again, that depends on where Tuukka’s [Rask] at.”

Lagacé will essentially replace 26-year-old former B’s draft pick Zane McIntyre, who is a Group 6 unrestricted free agent, and wasn’t very good (.898 save percentage in 46 games for the P-Bruins last season) for the Black and Gold over the last couple of years.

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Julian Edelman has dinner with David Pastrnak, Sean Kuraly, Charlie McAvoy

Julian Edelman has dinner with David Pastrnak, Sean Kuraly, Charlie McAvoy

It looks like Julian Edelman is enjoying his offseason by hanging out with a few of his friends from the black and gold. 

David Pastrnak, Sean Kuraly, and Charlie McAvoy joined Edelman for dinner at Monica's Trattoria in the North End before their matchup with the Vegas Golden Knights on Tuesday.

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Oh, and did we mention some members of the Golden Knights were there ahead of their Tuesday night clash with the Bruins? Talk about a popular restaurant.

It's always nice to see members of the Boston teams intermingle, especially when it brings guys like Edelman and Pastrnak together. We just have one question, though... did Pastrnak order the pasta?

Haggerty: These blown leads are concerning

 

Positive news for Kevan Miller as he skates on his own for first time

Positive news for Kevan Miller as he skates on his own for first time

The Bruins got some encouraging health news this week as injured B’s defenseman Kevan Miller was able to skate on his own for 15 minutes Sunday at Warrior Ice Arena while the rest of the team was in Pittsburgh.

The 32-year-old Miller has been out all season while trying to return from two different kneecap injuries suffered last season that kept him out of the entire postseason and limited him to just three games since the beginning of March. Miller underwent a procedure to assist in the healing process last month when he underwent a setback while trying to return earlier this season, so Sunday’s twirl was his first chance to get back on the ice and skate.

For a player that hasn’t played in almost a year now like Miller, any news is good news.

“That’s step one,” said Bruce Cassidy. “That’s a positive.”

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Certainly, it’s good news, but it’s also the very beginning of a recovery process that Miller has already experienced setbacks to a couple of times. Given the normal timetable for players just returning to the ice from an injury, it would be at least 7-10 days before Miller would be anywhere close to returning to game action.

The Bruins will have their All-Star break and bye week over the next 10 days, so it would be at least a few weeks before Miller would be ready to return barring the kind of setbacks that have plagued him since suffering the kneecap injuries.

It remains very much an uphill battle for the rugged D-man in the last year of his contract with the Bruins, but he’s also a tough-minded player that the B’s have absolutely missed during last year’s playoff run and this season. Some of the perceived ability to push these Bruins players around on the ice is because they don’t have the hardnosed 6-foot-2, 210-pound Miller out there to protect his teammates.

Given Zdeno Chara’s age and Charlie McAvoy’s inconsistency this season, Brandon Carlo has ably carried a very heavy load for the Bruins as a big-bodied shutdown defenseman that’s playing big minutes and in all situations for the Black and Gold. Adding Miller to the Bruins group would Carlo some company in the tough guy category and would also limit the amount of ice time they have to give to John Moore, who has been inconsistent for the Black and Gold since returning from shoulder surgery last month.

Haggerty: B's blown leads are concerning