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Bruins Face Reality That They Can’t Afford Bertuzzi

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Tyler Bertuzzi, Boston Bruins

The Boston Bruins could end up being priced out in their efforts to retain the Tyler Bertuzzi on their roster.

CapFriendly.com currently shows the Bruins with a current cap hit of more than $78 million with 15 players signed. That includes $4.5 million of salary cap overage carry over.  That leaves the Bruins with about $4.94 million of salary cap room for about eight players. Those players include restricted free agents Jeremy Swayman and Trent Frederic. Patrice Bergeron and David Krejci are also not signed for next season. If they don’t retire, the Bruins will need space to re-sign them as well.

AFP Analytics, a website that projects what player contracts will be, forecasts that Bertuzzi will receive a six-year contract for $5.26 million in the free agent marketplace.

Jimmy Murphy of Boston Hockey Now wrote that if reality is “anywhere close to that, the Bruins will be saying goodbye to Tyler Bertuzzi

The speculation has always been that Bertuzzi was looking for the security of a long-term deal. At 28, Bertuzzi will want to get a set-for-life deal.

Red Wings Not an Option

Based on social media posts, there are some Red Wings fans who would love to see GM Steve Yzerman try to lure Bertuzzi back to Detroit. The Red Wings traded him to Boston for a first- and fourth-round picks before the trade deadline.. However, that seems unlikely simply because negotiations for a new contract Bertuzzi never found any traction this season.

Even Detroit fans who aren’t hoping for Bertuzzi’s return would obviously prefer to see him out of the Atlantic Division.

The Bruins set NHL records for wins and points last season, but their cap woes will make it impossible to keep all of the players from last year’s team. Boston GM Don Sweeney has to consider all of his options, including trading away some regulars. Regardless of what Sweeney does, it feels like the Bruins could take a half-step backwards this season.

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But last summer the Bruins looked like they were in trouble because of injury woes. And we all know how that turned out.