Mason Lohrei, Trevor Kuntar, Mason Langenbrunner, and Riley Duran are the newest Bruins, with each kid preparing to play NCAA hockey in the near future.
The Bruins didn’t have a first-round pick, so it’s safe to say none of us were expecting any big names. Still, in some cases, the Bruins went a bit off the board with their picks.
However, GM Don Sweeney didn’t see it that way.
“Obviously, the Central Scouting and different groups that put together mock draft lists and do an exhaustive studies on their own behalf...I think they’re all resources,” he said. “Ultimately...you’re paid for your expertise and your opinion. I think we put together a list, we went over it exhaustively and went back over it in terms of the players we thought had a chance to be in the spots.”
“We looked at a longer-term play with some of these players,” he continued. “We felt like the development upside...if we provide the resources and if the player is committed to being the player they can become, then we have a chance to have some really good hockey players.”
As many have noted, the Bruins selected four more college-bound American players, including another kid who grew up a short (depending on traffic) highway trip from TD Garden.
Massachusetts-born Bruins include the newly drafted Duran, Charlie Coyle, Chris Wagner, Matt Grzelcyk, and Matt Filipe.
Is it on purpose?
“It’s a privilege to play for the Boston Bruins...I believed that as a player and I believe that as a manager,” he said. “I think some players are wired to want to play here in their home environment. This is a tremendous organization to play for...the city itself, as you guys all know, they will buy you a beer when you win. And they will tell you when you’re not playing well, and that’s just a fact of life. As a competitive person and an athlete, you really don’t want it any other way.”
The Draft isn’t the only iron the Bruins have in the fire right now, with free agency looming. When discussing free agency and his current roster, Sweeney was blunt.
“Ultimately, we’d like to improve our club. We’ve tried to look at our roster and we’ve explored some opportunities over the past three weeks and it hasn’t come to fruition that we’ve changed anybody and this point in time. It may. There’s been just a lot of conversations going on about the financial aspects in the landscape and how things are going to look. Some teams have made some moves in that regard, and we’re trying to look at it from a wide lens and realistically. Knowing that our club, we do have to improve. That’s through internal growth or obviously through some acquisition. And we’re going to explore them. I think you’re seeing sort of a new non-QO market emerge. You have to assess where those players necessarily fall into it. Maybe a little bit of an excess supply. There is a tremendous amount of goalie talk being out there. I think the pieces of the puzzle are uncertain, as is, when we start and how all those things factor together. We know we have a good hockey club where we’re at.“
“We’d like to get better,” he said. “We’d like to improve. We’re not as good as we need to be. And that’s the bottom line.”
“There’s been just a lot of conversations going on about the financial aspects in the landscape and how things are going to look,” he continued. “Some teams have made some moves in that regard, and we’re trying to look at it from a wide lens...knowing that our club, we do have to improve. That’s through internal growth or obviously through some acquisition. And we’re going to explore them.”