The Florida Panthers bought out Keith Yandle this past week and my first thought was, does Yandle’s availability potentially solve one of the Boston Bruins’ biggest off-season dilemmas — how to bring in an experienced defenceman who can run a power play the way Torey Krug once did, without costing them a financial arm and a leg?
Prediction: Yandle is going to be this year’s answer to Tyson Barrie, a skilled, but flawed puckhandling defenseman who isn’t in a position to chase the biggest payday at this stage of his career, but needs to find a good fit. And the best fit may well be in Boston, Yandle’s hometown.
Let’s examine the case for signing a talented, but imperfect player: As does Krug, Yandle plays the right side. Even more than Krug ever did, Yandle needs to play protected minutes. But he can do that in Boston.
The Bruins just lost Kevan Miller to retirement, but as long as they can steer the Seattle Kraken away from Connor Clifton, they’re loaded on the right side.
Brandon Carlo just signed an extension. Charlie McAvoy is edging into elite territory, if he isn’t there already.
The left side is where there’s a deep dark hole — the Bruins never really fixing the gap they created when they let Krug and Zdeno Chara walk simultaneously in the same offseason.