The Boston Bruins faced a tough decision during the trade deadline regarding what to do with forward Loui Eriksson. The 30-year-old Swede had enjoyed a great third season with 23 goals, becoming a perfect fit on the Bruins second line, but his pending free agency was a cause for concern.
Boston didn’t want to trade him, but extension talks weren’t going anywhere, and Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman reported the Bruins were only going to deal him if they got the “Corleone-Style” offer.
Boston’s ask for Loui Eriksson was big. At least a first-rounder and another strong player/prospect. The Bruins know Eriksson fits well, so only a Corleone-style “offer you can’t refuse” was going to pry him loose. It’s going to be hard to close this gap. No one’s talking, but Eriksson and agent JP Barry initially asked for six years, with the club offering three. The Bruins moved to four last week, but Eriksson won’t be going in that direction unless the average annual salary moves up to offset lower term. Boston’s current number is believed to be in the low 5s. No doubt the player and agent would like it to start with a six.
Salary talks may be far apart, but with the Bruins firmly in contention for the playoffs (they sit third in the Atlantic with 76 points) trading Eriksson, one of your best goal scorers, wouldn’t help them towards their ultimate goal.
Keeping Eriksson certainly poses a risk of losing him for nothing, but if he can help the Bruins the rest of the season and in the playoffs, I think Don Sweeney and company will live with the gamble.