So far this offseason the Bruins have lost three key players from last years team. Those players are Riley Nash, Tim Schaller, and Anton Khudobin. Yesterday the Bruins were able to resign one of their key pieces on the fourth line. The Bruins and Sean Kuraly agreed on a three year extension worth 1.25 million annually. Kuraly showed his value last year in his first full NHL season. He is not a thirty goal scorer but his gritty play makes him invaluable to the Bruins on the bottom lines.
How The Bruins Got Kuraly
The Bruins acquired Kuraly in the 2015 offseason from the San Jose Sharks in exchange for Martin Jones. Boston had acquired Jones hoping he would backup Rask but he wanted to be the starter. The Sharks also sent Boston a first round pick which would turn into Trent Frederic who is one of Boston’s highly touted prospects. This trade has worked out well for both sides and could end up being better for the Bruins depending on Frederic’s impact.
Kuraly’s Makes His Debut
Kuraly made his NHL debut during the 2016-2017 season appearing in eight regular season games. He had only one point in the regular season but in the playoffs had a significant impact. In Game 5 with the Bruins facing elimination Kuraly had two goals including the game winner. Kuraly’s heroics would force a game six which the Bruins would lose eliminating them from the playoffs. The former fifth round pick would carry that disappoint into this past season.
Photo Credit: Matt Kalman, CBS Boston
A Solid Rookie Season
During the 2017-2018 season Kuraly appeared in 75 games mostly appearing on the fourth line. He had six goals along with nine assists as the Bruins fourth line became a fan favorite. He was not afraid of taking the body and his style of play was perfect for the Bruins fourth line. In the playoffs he was again productive as he had two goals and two assists. In game one against Toronto he had a truly unbelievable goal in which he batted a puck out of the air into the net. Next season the expectations will be even higher for the former fifth round pick.
What To Expect Next Season
With the departure of Riley Nash to Columbus Kuraly is a candidate to take his spot on the third line. The Bruins showed faith the center by extending him to a reasonable contract. So far this offseason the Bruins have prioritized depth which was reflected in extending Kuraly. He will never score 30 goals but he could see a boast in points if he does end up on the third line. Kuraly has shown that he will leave it all on the ice and next year will be no different.
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