NHL Rumors: Columbus Blue Jackets, and the Boston Bruins

Six blue line targets for the Columbus Blue Jackets

Aaron Portzline of The Athletic: The Columbus Blues Jackets will be looking for a left-handed defenseman for their second pair either through free agency or trade this offseason.

The Blue Jackets top pair next season is expected to have Zach Werenski on the left and possibly rookie David Jiricek on the right.

Their second pair has Adam Boqvist on the right. Their third pair will have Erik Gudbranson and one of Jake Bean, Tim Berni, Nick Blankenburg and Andrew Peeke.

Six free agent defensemen the Blue Jackets could target this offseason to play on the left side.

Ian Cole – Tampa Bay Lightning
Brian Dumoulin – Pittsburgh Penguins
Vladislav Gavrikov – Los Angeles Kings
Ryan Graves – New Jersey Devils
Dmitry Kulikov – Pittsburgh Penguins
Dmitry Orlov – Boston Bruins

The Boston Bruins would like to re-sign their trade deadline additions but …

Fluto Shinzawa of The Athletic: Boston Bruins GM Don Sweeney when asked if they would be interested in re-signing trade deadline acquisitions in defenseman Dmitry Orlov, and forwards Garnet Hathaway and Tyler Bertuzzi.

“Absolutely. It has been a positive thing for our club that players get here, acclimate and they feel good about what we’re trying to accomplish. And they want to be a part of that. If you have the cap space and the ability to negotiate effectively, then you’d like to bring them on board. So it’s a little bit of a tryout for both sides.

“You hopefully identify (a good fit) prior to (trades), otherwise you’ve probably made a mistake in bringing a player in. But we feel good about these guys coming in to push our group.”

With the salary cap expected to be at $83.5 million, the Bruins will be tough with 15 players already committed for next season at just under $75 million. They’ll have up to $4.5 million in overages for Patrice Bergeron and David Krejci.

Jeremy Swayman and Trent Frederic are pending RFAs.

It could take a four-year deal for Orlov in the $4-$5 million range. One or both of Matt Grzelcyk ($3,687,500) and Derek Forbort ($3 million) could be moved.

Hathaway would likely get more term and money on the open market.

Bertuzzi would likely get more in free agency too, but maybe they could get him signed long-term for $5.5 million. Grzelcyk and Forbort may need to be moved. Taylor Hall $6 million has a partial no-trade and could be a trade candidate.