Torey Krug’s tenure in Boston could be coming to an end.
According to multiple reports, a number of teams have shown "significant interest" in acquiring Krug's negotiating rights from Boston — with the Bruins close to pulling the trigger on said move.
Rear Admiral of Barstool Sports was the first to report that such a deal was potentially in the works, while TSN’s Frank Seravalli confirmed on Monday afternoon that multiple teams were vying for a chance to secure exclusive negotiating rights with the soon-to-be free agent. Seravalli added that the Bruins' latest offer to Krug is believed to be six years and an average annual value of $6.5 million.
Even if a six-year, $39 million extension might be viewed by some as solid value in an offseason hampered by a flat salary cap upper limit, a potential trade of this nature simply seemed inevitable as time wore on — given the unique circumstances of this revamped offseason, Krug's potential value on the open market and what appeared to be the writing on the wall when it came to his future in Boston beyond the 2019-20 campaign.
By trading Krug’s negotiating rights, Boston would recoup at least some bit of draft capital in exchange for the playmaking defenseman’s exit — a departure that appeared to be mapped out as soon as Boston was knocked out of the Toronto bubble at the end of August.
“I’ve spent my whole adult life, my whole professional career here in this organization, in this city,” Krug said earlier this month. “I’ve done seemingly everything that they’ve asked of me and I’m proud of that. I’ve put all my energy into trying to help this team win games and win championships and we’ve come close twice now and unfortunately, it wasn’t in the cards for us. I’m a big believer that there is a journey for all of us. Whether it’s here or somewhere else, I’m not too worried about it or anxious about it.”
If Krug is intent on going to market in search of a payday beyond what Boston is offering him ($8+ million per year remains a possibility), the Bruins might follow what appears to be a growing trend this offseason when it comes to biting the bullet on a free-agent departure by way of a deal involving negotiating rights.