Bruins

Bruins trade rumor: Blues' Schenn an intriguing possibility

Bruins trade rumor: Blues' Schenn an intriguing possibility

BRIGHTON, Mass – The Bruins continue to look to add at least one more forward to their current group that begins the second half of the regular season with a big divisional tilt tonight against the Buffalo Sabres.

Don Sweeney has been very active on the phone with other GMs around the league trying to engineer a trade at a time of year when players don’t normally get moved. It’s clearly a byproduct of watching the Bruins continue to rotate through Joakim Nordstrom, Ryan Donato, Danton Heinen, Anders Bjork and now David Backes while looking for a match with David Krejci and Jake DeBrusk.

“[David Krejci’s] numbers are up and obviously, some of that is playing on the top line,” said Bruce Cassidy, who has done his best to juggle forwards in the first half, but clearly could use at least one more quality veteran NHL forward to add to the group. “But he’s got to find the missing piece over there [on the right wing] to help them out and really be a two-headed monster [with the top two lines].”

And there’s also the perpetual search for a third-line center as well with Colby Cave a healthy scratch for Saturday and Jakob Forsbacka Karlsson showing improvement in dribs and drabs while getting a golden chance to lock down the job.

It’s why the Bruins have been linked to Weymouth, Mass., product and Minnesota Wild forward Charlie Coyle in trade chatter in the first half of the season and it’s now why St. Louis center Brayden Schenn is being linked to the Black and Gold in rumors as well. James Murphy from CLNS Media tweeted Friday night that a couple of sources indicated to him that the Bruins and Blues were talking deal, and that the Schenn, 27, was involved.

Several sources had mentioned to NBCSportsBoston.com over Winter Classic weekend that Schenn might be on the radar for the Bruins and could be a trade deadline possibility, along with Coyle, Wayne Simmonds or even New Jersey Devils forward Miles Wood.  

There’s some level of trepidation from this humble hockey writer that Coyle wouldn’t really make that much of an impact in coming to Boston, but Schenn would be an interesting pick-up for the B’s on a number of levels. His numbers are down a little bit this season with just seven goals and 22 points in 34 games for a mediocre Blues team, but Schenn is a player who's averaged 23 goals and 54 points the past five seasons. Even better the 6-foot-1, 190-pounder plays with a little bit of an edge to his game and would bring some veteran physicality, size and toughness to a forward group that could definitely use it.

His 19 career fights in the NHL show that he's also another player that will stand up for his teammates and the Bruins could always use a little more of that to add to a smaller, faster skill-oriented group. 

The cost is another factor for the Bruins, of course. It wouldn’t be cheap given that Schenn still has one more season at $5.125 million before he becomes a free agent. So, the Bruins would get a strong forward to add to the group, but the cost would be beyond a mere rental and could get into a first-round pick and a good prospect along with a contract to make the deal work. Could the Blues be interested in getting former captain David Backes back for a similar cap number to Schenn, or be looking to bring home Bruins center prospect and St. Louis native Trent Frederic?

There are some interesting fits between the Blues and the Bruins that could make something like this work and Schenn would obviously be a big upgrade to what the B’s have. It doesn’t magically make the Bruins a shoo-in to get Schenn, of course, but this is one rumor to keep an eye on the next weeks and months while the B’s are clearly going to pull the trigger on bringing in at least one forward.    

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Talking Points from the Bruins' 4-3 loss to the Flyers

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Talking Points from the Bruins' 4-3 loss to the Flyers

Talking points from the B's loss to the Flyers. . .

GOLD STAR: Sean Couturier scored three of the four goals for the Flyers, and was right in the middle of everything while playing a strong 200-foot game for Philly. The eventual game-winner was both a good, strong wrist shot from the left face-off circle off the rush, and it was also an incredibly soft goal allowed by Jaroslav Halak. Couturier finished with the hat trick and a plus-1 rating in 22:18 of ice time, five shots on net and 13-of-23 face-off wins in an impressive all-around game for the Flyers. The Flyers' best players were the game’s best players on Wednesday night and it was as simple as that, and Couturier was the best of the best.

BLACK EYE: It looks like the spaced out appearances and the natural ebb and flow to the season have caught up to Jaroslav Halak, who struggled with four goals allowed on 18 shots in Wednesday night’s loss. Halak has now allowed four goals in three of his last four games and is sporting an .861 save percentage over that time span. He's really come crashing back down to Earth after his great start to the season for the Bruins and tonight’s loss to the Flyers was another example. The final goal allowed to Couturier on a wrist shot from the face-off circle was the backbreaker that made it a two-goal game. Halak had a couple of pretty good saves mixed in, but he looked like he was fighting the puck for most of the night while picking up his third loss in his last four starts.  

TURNING POINT: The Bruins looked like they kicked back and relaxed after taking an early 2-0 lead in the first period. They got lax on defense, their power play lacked urgency when they had a couple of chances to do damage with it, and as a team they barely reacted when Jori Lehtera clobbered Ryan Donato from behind at the end of the second period. It’s a couple of times now this season that the B’s looked like they stopped playing after taking an early lead, so that’s something they’re going to need to work on for the future. Considering the opponent and the circumstances of the game, this loss to the Flyers was one of the worst ones in a while for the B’s.

HONORABLE MENTION: A great start for Peter Cehlarik scoring in the first period of his first game with the Bruins this season. It was a pretty perfect setup from Jake DeBrusk cross-ice to Cehlarik, who buried the shot into the vacant portion of the net with Flyers goaltender Carter Hart going side-to-side with the moving puck. Cehlarik also had a boarding penalty on his first shift of the game, but at least he’s trying to get involved physically. Cehlarik couldn’t get off another shot on net through the rest of the two periods and had a giveaway to go along with a takeaway and a blocked shot. Cehlarik then added a second goal around the front of the net in the late moments of the third period. He certainly did his job with the two goals and wasn’t a liability at all for the Bruins, so Cehlarik certainly merits a longer look on the David Krejci line after his debut.

BY THE NUMBERS: 121 – the number of goals scored by David Pastrnak prior to his 23rd birthday after tonight’s first period power play strike, which ranks as the most goals scored in franchise history by a player 22 years old or younger.

QUOTE TO NOTE: "Makes us wonder why we didn't call him up a long time ago." – Bruce Cassidy to reporters about Peter Cehlarik’s two-goal performance in his first game since getting called up to the Bruins. 

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Highlights from the Bruins' 4-3 loss to the Flyers

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Highlights from the Bruins' 4-3 loss to the Flyers

FINAL SCORE: Flyers 4, Bruins 3

BRUINS RECORD: 26-16-5

FROM JOE HAGGERTY:

1. I know JFK is a young player just figuring it out, but you really shouldn't need somebody to tell you to have the back of your linemate when he gets drilled from behind into the boards. He was literally right next to the play & didn't do anything besides put his arm around him for about a half-second. The play was Jori Lehtera drilling Ryan Donato from behind into the side boards and dasher while bloodying him. Donato left the ice and went back to the dressing room for repairs and Lehtera was slapped with a five minute major for boarding, and once again the Bruins didn’t do much of anything to an opponent taking liberty with them.

2. The Bruins also coughed up a one-goal lead in that second period by giving up a pair of goals. The more egregious of the two was a power play goal where Sean Kuraly and Chris Wagner got caught deep in the offensive zone after going on a two-man shorthanded rush that got knocked away into the corner. The Flyers quickly transitioned the other way and the play ended with a Sean Couturier goal right in front. Perhaps a little more conservative PK work from the fourth line duo of Kuraly and Wagner might be called for the next time around.

3. A great start for Peter Cehlarik scoring in the first period of his first game with the Bruins this season. It was a pretty perfect setup from Jake DeBrusk cross-ice to Cehlarik, who buried the shot into the vacant portion of the net with Flyers goaltender Carter Hart going side-to-side with the moving puck. Cehlarik also has a boarding penalty on his first shift of the game, but at least he’s trying to get involved physically as well. Cehlarik couldn’t get off another shot on net through the rest of the two periods and had a giveaway to go along with a takeaway and a blocked shot. He certainly did his job with the first-period goal and wasn’t a liability at all for the Bruins, so Cehlarik certainly merits a longer look on the David Krejci line after his debut. 

4. It looks like the spaced out appearances and the natural ebb and flow to the season have caught up to Jaroslav Halak, who struggled with four goals allowed on 18 shots in Wednesday night’s loss. Halak has now allowed four goals in three of his last four games and is sporting a .861 save percentage over that time span. He's really come crashing back down to Earth after his great start to the season for the Bruins and tonight’s loss to the Flyers was another example. The final goal allowed to Sean Couturier on a wrist shot from the face-off circle was the backbreaker that made it a two-goal game. 

BOX SCORE.

HIGHLIGHTS

KRUG TO PASTA

CEHLARIK'S 2ND CAREER GOAL

FLYERS GET ON THE BOARD

TIED GAME

FLYERS STEAL THE LEAD

LEHTARA GETS 5 MINUTES FOR BOARDING DONATO

FLYERS TACK ON THEIR FOURTH

CEHLARIK SCORES HIS SECOND OF THE GAME

UP NEXT

THURSDAY: vs Blues, 7:00 p.m. (NESN)

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