The NHL trade deadline is officially heating up — with a potential Bruins target swapping sweaters and heading off to one of the B's top roadblocks in a crowded East Division.
Devils winger Kyle Palmieri — who has been an apple of the Bruins' eyes for years now as a steady two-way forward with an established track record of offensive production (25+ goals in his last five full seasons) — was dealt to the Islanders on Wednesday night along with his New Jersey teammate, Travis Zajac.
In return, the Islanders parted with their 2021 first-round pick, a conditional fourth-round pick and forwards A.J. Greer and Mason Jobst to New Jersey — with the Devils retaining 50% of both Palmieri and Zajac's salary.
Even with relinquishing a coveted first-round pick, it stands as a solid move for the Islanders, who were desperate to recoup some top-six scoring punch with captain Anders Lee out for the season due to injury. Even though Palmieri has seen his offensive production decline a bit this season, you'd be hard-pressed to find a drawback with this deal — especially given that the Islanders did not have to part with top prospects in addition to that first-rounder.
Given how much the Islanders have stood as a thorn in the side of the Bruins already this year (0-3-2 vs. New York), adding a guy in Palmieri who has already lit the lamp five times against the B's in six games makes an already tough New York club even a tougher outcome the postseason.
Well, another season, another target slipping through the Bruins' grasp.
We've seen the Bruins land in this spot before — with the club finishing as runners-up the Blake Coleman sweepstakes a year ago and coming up short on a player that was reportedly in their "hip pocket" in Tyler Toffoli.
Now, granted, even if the optics of the Bruins' coming up short on yet another forward that would have helped their middle-six might be awfully frustrating to some, you could make the argument that parting ways with a first-rounder for a pair of rentals was too high of a price for the B's.