Why Bruins were right to not go 'all in' on Taylor Hall trade

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Why Bruins were right to not go 'all in' on Taylor Hall trade

The trade has come down for Taylor Hall, and the Arizona Coyotes gave up a first-round pick, a conditional third-round pick (that could become a first if the Coyotes make the playoff and re-sign Hall), 6-foot-7 D-man prospect Kevin Bahl, 2015 first-round pick Nick Merkley and forward prospect Nate Schnarr to bring the former Hart Trophy winner to the desert.

It’s an understandable haul given up by Coyotes GM John Chayka, who needs to start seeing some results for the roster that he’s built up in Arizona.

He’s now spent assets to go get Phil Kessel and Hall as hired guns for this season to go with their young core group, and will gladly spend two first-round picks if that means the Coyotes A) get into the playoffs this spring and B) Hall likes Arizona so much that he ends up re-signing there.

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But for all the Bruins fans clamoring that the Black and Gold should have gone all in and dealt for Hall this week?

Well, not so much.

The Bruins would have been forced to give up a comparable package of 2017 first-round pick Urho Vaakanainen, 2015 first-round pick Zach Senyshyn and 2016 first-round pick Trent Frederic along with what could been an end cost of two first-round picks for a player with no guarantees of sticking around beyond this spring.

Certainly Hall would have immediately brought offensive legitimacy to the B’s second line and realistically could be energized by a move to a place like Boston after languishing in New Jersey for the last couple of seasons.

He's only two years removed from 39 goals and 93 points, and can still at 28 years old be dominant and game-breaking as a left winger on any top-6 across the NHL. But he’s also had difficulty staying healthy over the last few seasons and has essentially worn out his welcome in two spots now (Edmonton, New Jersey) after being a first overall pick in the 2010 NHL Draft.

So is Hall worth that kind of haul?

To the Arizona Coyotes it’s wholly worth it to go all in, roll the ice and hope that Hall helps lead them back to legitimacy this spring. It’s also worth it to overpay and get the Devils to swallow half of his owed money so the Coyotes are only on the hook for a $3 million cap hit, which is something the Bruins would have absolutely had to do to make the deal as well.

For the Bruins, it’s wiser and more practical to pass on Hall, and wait on players like Ilya Kovalchuk, Tyler Toffoli, Josh Anderson and others who might become available ahead of the NHL trade deadline, or in the case of Kovalchuk much sooner than that.

Honestly, Hall isn’t even the best potential fit for the Black and Gold if they were looking to lift somebody from the Devils roster. That would be Kyle Palmieri, who's coming off four straight 20-goal seasons for the Devils with just a single season left on his contract for a Jersey team going nowhere.

Bruins-Hurricanes simulation: Canes beat B's 1-0 on flukey goal

Bruins-Hurricanes simulation: Canes beat B's 1-0 on flukey goal

The NHL season has been put on hold due to the coronavirus crisis, meaning we may have to wait a while to watch the Boston Bruins again.

As a way to make up for the loss of Bruins action, we'll be using the EA Sports NHL 20 video game to simulate each game on Boston's schedule until they finally return to action.

Previous Simulations:

The Boston Bruins were supposed to take on the Carolina Hurricanes on Tuesday night at PNC Arena, here's how our simulation of that game went.

The B's fell to the Canes 1-0 on a flukey third-period goal that slipped by Tuukka Rask. 

Here are the game stats:

Three Stars of the Game + Game Stats

Anton Forsberg, Tuukka Rask and Andrei Svechnikov were the three stars of the game. The Hurricanes led in shots with 25 and they also had three power-play opportunities that they squandered. The Bruins seemed to have passed too much in the offensive zone and didn't take enough shots on goal in the loss when comparing the shots to their time on attack.  

Bruins Individual Stats

Charlie McAvoy led all B's skaters in ice time with 23:42 while David Krejci and David Pastrnak each had three shots on goal. Tuukka Rask stopped 24 of 25 shots in the loss, but the defense didn't help them out too much.

Hurricanes Individual Stats

Jaccob Slavin led all Hurricanes skaters in ice time with 24:11 and Martin Necas led in shots with four. Anton Forsberg stopped all 17 shots faced and the Hurricanes sneak by with a flukey goal from Andrei Svechnikov.

FINAL SCORE: Hurricanes 1, Bruins 0

Bruins Record (Includes simulated games): 47-16-14 (107 points)

*NOTE: We did not include Boston's games against the Buffalo Sabres, Toronto Maple Leafs or Florida Panthers in the simulation, therefore the simulated record isn't 100 percent accurate*

Next Simulation: vs. St. Louis Blues on Thursday

Be sure to keep an eye out for our Bruins vs. Blues simulation which is set to drop on Thursday.

We aren't the only ones enjoying sports video games to pass the time and get their competitive fix. Even the B's Anton Blidh is enjoying his time off with a little virtual sports action.

Phil Esposito set impressive Bruins goal scoring record on this day in 1971

Phil Esposito set impressive Bruins goal scoring record on this day in 1971

March 31 is a special day in the history books of the Boston Bruins franchise.

Hall of Fame forward Phil Esposito scored his 70th goal (an NHL record at the time) of the 1970-71 season on this day, becoming the first Bruins player to hit that goal-scoring milestone.

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Check out the graphic below for more information:

Esposito's 76 goals in the 1970-71 season still stand as a Bruins record for a single campaign.

Bruins right winger David Pastrnak was making a run at 60 goals earlier this season. The 23-year-old star currently sits at 48 goals with the season suspended due to the outbreak of the coronavirus. Pastrnak is tied for the league lead with Washington Capitals star Alex Ovechkin.

If the 2019-20 season doesn't resume or the league decides to go straight to the Stanley Cup Playoffs upon returning, Pastrnak would be the first Bruins player to win or share the Maurice "Rocket" Richard Trophy as the league's leading goal scorer since Esposito in 1974-75.