Don Sweeney: ‘We have some forecasting to do’ before extending Torey Krug’s contract

Matt Kalman
September 17, 2019 - 4:13 pm

Now that restricted free agents Charlie McAvoy and Brandon Carlo have signed their extensions, who do you want the Bruins to re-sign next?

If your answer is Torey Krug, you’re not alone. The diminutive defenseman is a vital cog on the ice as a top-four defender and power-play quarterback, and in the dressing room as one of the emotional leaders of the club.

Krug is scheduled to be an unrestricted free agent on July 1, 2020. Although he already said he’d be willing to take less money to stay in Boston, negotiations could turn a different direction. Krug is entering the last year of a four-year, $21 million contract.

Those talks will begin soon, Bruins general manager Don Sweeney said on Tuesday, but the GM also said he needs more time to plan out what the Bruins’ roster and payroll is going to look like next year and beyond.

“Everybody has their place on our hockey club, and Torey’s an important part of our hockey club,” Sweeney said. “We have some forecasting to do, we have conversations that have to take place, they will, and I indicated to each and every one of our players that we will have those once I have the ability to start forecasting a little more accurately. And then so I’ll do that accordingly.”

Krug isn’t the only player due a new contract after the 2019-20 season. Forward Jake DeBrusk and defenseman Matt Grzelcyk will be RFAs (as will newcomer Brett Ritchie). Charlie Coyle is a second big UFA, with Joakim Nordstrom, Chris Wagner and Kevan Miller in a second tier. Then there’s always the decision about what to do with captain Zdeno Chara, who will probably want to continue to play as long as Sweeney is keeping so much talent around him.

Sweeney doesn’t anticipate focusing on any of the contracts more than the others.

“You’ve got simultaneous things going on. There’s no prioritization from the standpoint of one player being in front of the other player. Having the ability to communicate, that you have to make those decision sometimes based on [financial circumstances>, sometimes, and maybe based on who’s potentially coming along to replace those players if they decide to leave.

“We had players that left our organization this year because they had opportunities, and you wish them well. That may happen again, but it won’t be for lack of the Bruins [appreciating> what they’re doing for our hockey club now. And I’ll attack each and every one of them. When they finalize, either here or somewhere else, that has yet to be determined. But we have to do it with every one of them.”