Boston Globe writer Fluto Shinzawa (would I make that up?) has suggested more than once that the Boston Bruins may trade Phil Kessel and his 2.2M cap hit during the summer.

The Bruins are looking for size and scoring in free agency and apparently would like another defenseman before training camp.

Kessel scored 1.57/60 at EVs in 07-08, which is about where Fernando Pisani and Marc Pouliot performed for the Oilers. The difference of course is that Kessel is 20 and has his future in front of him, a future that should involve 20 and 30 goal seasons.

  • Age 19 (BOS) 70gp, 11-18-29, -12, 1.78EV, 1.77PP 170 shots
  • Age 20 (BOS) 82gp, 19-18-37, -6, 1.62EV, 2.79PP 213 shots

“Phil the Thrill” has been benched a few times, most recently in the playoff series with Montreal this spring. At the time, Bruins GM Peter Chiarell said “You’ve seen the physicalness of this series. Skilled guys get scratched all the time. We wanted to add physical guys to our lineup. Maybe (Kessel) would have got a goal somewhere along the way, but we’re happy with our decision and Phil will learn from it. He (Kessel) is young and good. He’s only going to get better. I feel he made great strides this season. His offensive game can improve, and it has. He’s got a good shot. We like his release and offensive intuition. He’s only 20. Let’s not forget about that.” Kessel finished the playoffs this spring going 4gp, 3-1-4 for Boston.

Knowing that the Bruins may be dangling a young “first shot” scorer and that the Oilers have stated this is something they may pursue, is there interest in this talented but flawed player? If he cost this club Raffi Torres, is that something you could get behind? What about one of the 24-year old defensemen?

Could Phil Kessel be the centerpiece of a Joni Pitkanen trade?

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36 Responses to "Kessel?"

  1. HBomb says:

    Honestly, give up Torres OR Pitkanen for Kessel?

    No thanks.

    I’ve heard and read too much negative about the guy. One shot scorer? Perhaps, but I think we need a guy with size, and preferably some experience (unless Jeff Carter becomes available, in which case 3 years NHL experience is enough for me). The preferred position of this player would be a LW (allowing for a 2nd line of Penner-Gagner-Nilsson and a 3rd line of Torres-Cogliano/Pouliot-Pisani).

    Erik Cole please. Alex Frolov or Ryane Clowe would also be acceptable.

  2. Muller says:

    I’d grab Kessel in a second he’s young, fast and can only get better. Speed kills in todays NHL.

  3. Jesse says:

    Those are a lot of nice words from Chiarelli about a ‘first-shot-scorer’ who gets benched in the playoffs and who he thinks has more value as trade-bait than as a 2.2 million dollar player on the Bruins.

    I’d say for Torres, maybe, but if that’s all we can get for Joni, we’re better off keeping him.

  4. rickibear says:

    Having finally found Johnathan’s site (C&B)to add to yours (BDHS, COI, IOF) already great sites of influence.

    Remembering (though not whom made them)the comments about Dmen strength of competition. It has influenced the thought on our D. Alot have expressed a Smid over Greene choice. Though Bruce did have me on his side with a good set of points re: Greene.

    Since that time I have thought a Torrres and Greeene power package might be a move to Carolina. Though, a Torres and Greene package for Kessel does work.

    His surgery may be an x-factor in his production growth this year.

    Based on Desjardins projection curves he could go:
    08/09 53pts
    09/10 67pts
    10/11 78pts

    or if his surgery was not a factor
    08/09 50pts
    09/10 60pts
    10/11 64pts

    When you look at his shooting %:
    06/07 6.5% 2.4Shots/GM
    07/08 8.9% 2.6Shots/GM
    It is low but on the rise. Shooters have two low years and two high watermark years and then float around there average shooting %. Kessel fits in the over 200 shots/YR category LT seeks in a scorer.Maybe these are his two low years, based on the upward progression.

    Unlike a guy like Torres:
    03/04 14.7% 1.7Sh/Gm
    05/06 16.5% 2.0Sh/Gm
    06/07 9.7% 1.9Sh/Gm
    07/08 5.7% 2.7Sh/Gm
    03/04, 05/06 look like high watermark and 07/08 is a low year.
    He looks like a 10.3% 2.0Sh/Gm player. If we keep him I hope not.

  5. Traktor says:

    Not a chance that Torres lands Kessel.

    I’m not sure what a guy who had back to back slump seasons and a season ending injury and a 2.25 cap hit going forward is worth but it certainly isn’t going to net you a budding goal scorer like Kessel. Not even close.

    I don’t think Kessel is what we need anyways. We need a one shot scorer but we need someone with size. We need someone that not only isn’t afraid to go in the corners with Robyn Regehr but someone who won’t put up with Regehr taking liberties on Hemsky either. Horcoff won’t stick up for Hemsky. Nilsson, Cogs and Gagner don’t have it in them and Penner is a gentle giant. (Penner playing with more fire is an absolute must this year)

    Lucic would be the perfect fit but the Bruins will never trade him.

    Ryane Clowe is a great call hbomb but the Sharks will never trade him. A team looking to aquire Clowe is going to have to pay for his potential and you’re probably looking at a huge overpay to get him. Wilson is probably looking at 2nd line value in return for Clowe who has only has 44 points in 91 reg season games.

    I think people are selling short when they pencil in Cogs on the 3rd line too. He’s certainly a better player than Nilsson and he isn’t far behind Gagner either. (Cogliano actually helps his team win games a lot more than Gagner, IMO)

  6. Traktor says:

    I also don’t think the Bruins would have a huge interest in Pitkanen. Chara has a 7.5 cap hit and Dennis Wideman is going to be making Gilbert money. Can they afford 16 million on Chara, Pitkanen and Wideman? Besides, I thought they wanted to add toughness?

  7. Lord Bob says:

    Kessel for Torres (or even Torres+picks/Jacques/etc.) is so one-sided in the Oilers favour I suddenly feel like I’m on Hockey’s Future. :P

    I agree with Traktor when he mentions the Bruins not probably wanting Pitkanen, too. He’s a guy I’d love to have on the team: I’m not worried about his playoff benching since Claude Julien has always had… shall we say, a complicated relationship with skill players. Say what you will about Craig MacTavish, he can give guys like Samsonov and Hemsky their head.

  8. doritogrande says:

    kessel for smid?

    Helps both teams. We get a sniper to keep up with Hemsky (imagine a soft minute line of Kessel-Gagner-Hemsky tearing through lesser opposition) and Boston gets a cheap hard-nosed blueliner.

    It also culls the herd of NHL defensemen we seem to be blessed with.


    Where’s Torres you ask? Stop asking questions!

  9. Lowetide says:

    Interesting comments all. CLEARLY I’m alone on a Raffi island.

  10. James Mirtle says:

    I’m not so sure the Bruins are looking for another defenceman, not with guys like Alberts expected to be healthy next season and play big minutes. They do need an Aaron Ward replacement, but Pitkanen’s obviously got a bigger price tag.

    Maybe. I think they’d be crazy to move Kessel.

  11. Lowetide says:

    James: I agree, but this keeps getting mentioned by the BOS media so maybe there’s something to it. The Bruins of the recent past sent away young players before their prime, this wouldn’t be completely out of the blue.

    I didn’t mention it in the post (thought I did) but the Dman tip came from a Sunday Matheseon EJ column.

  12. Dennis says:

    Isn’t Kevin Dupont the primary B’s writer for the BGlobe? I like Kessel’s flashes but I’m not convinced the B’s will deal him and are we really that horny for a one-shot scorer? The Oilers PP was pretty damn good for the last 60 games and this was without this one-shot guy; I’d be more worried about crafting a team that doesn’t such at EV because it looks pretty clear we have enough one-shot scoring to make the PP hum.

    Anyway, I think LT’s having a bit of a laugh here because you can’t deal Joni for another forward and then leave the D in an accompanying shambles.

    And we all know it’s not like Lowe to leave one area looking obviously thin, now is it?

    Anyway, I’m still a Raffi guy. The goal-scoring’s dried up but he’s a proven tough min guy who adds a bit of an unknown quality when it comes to physical play.

    And he’s not costing a lot either.

  13. Lowetide says:

    Well I like Pitkanen to stay here, in fact would be okay with a slight overpay to buy a couple of UFA seasons.

    And I like Raffi a ton too, so dealing him off needs to bring back something useful.

    But if we’re to believe they feel a need to add a “first shot scorer” and they do have some dollars to spare, then it’s reasonable to look at NHL cities with players who have those skills and may be on the outs with management.

    I believe Kevin Paul Dupont is the primary writer, Dennis. However, this Chet Flippo guy has been writing more and more B’s.

  14. Dennis says:

    Maybe the brass and some of the fans were watching a different team than I but can anyone come up with a compelling argument that this team’s biggest weakness is EV play?

    These fuckers can kill penalties no matter who’s on IR and I haven’t crunched the numbers in awhile but weren’t they close to 20% on the PP in the last 60 games? So, there you go, two areas that look solid.

    We’ve been hearing about one-shot scoring since Hecht had his head under the covers in Manheim but I don’t think we really need one. THe Oilers scored the 4th most goals in the Conf so it’s not like we’re talking about the offense of the ’89 Expos.

    There’s no Tom Foley’s here dashing the dreams of 14 year olds;)

    Sure, it would be nice if Hossa landed here and scored 35 goals and backchecked like he’s been doing for the Pens this playoffs but I honestly think things will be shored up somewhat at EV once we get a full season out of Torres just for starters.

    THen again all these roads lead to the Oilers ’09 roster construction and we won’t have a clue about how that’s looking until the Draft passes.

  15. Dennis says:

    Quick and dirty look as the Oilers at 11th overall in terms of GF.

    What this team needs is for some of the young D to grow up OR to bring in a D or two that has a few hundred GP under their belts and knows how to make the safe play.

    If you bring in a one shot scorer that’s say ~+5 at best, how does that reall help?

    What needs to be done is 27-10-83 play the tough and then 14-34 plus a pivot play the second tough and the kids get to dilly-dally against the third liners of the world.

    At least that’s how it should go up front.

    On the backline, bring in a vet or two.

  16. Lowetide says:

    I’d rather see them spend money on a veteran D to eat up the EV minutes and some Moreau insurance.

  17. HBomb says:

    You know what would make a pile of sense? And this is coming from a pro-Pitkanen guy….

    - Deal Pitkanen for Erik Cole straight across.

    - Move some combination of Smid/Moreau/Stoll for a veteran d-man.

    - Sign Mike Commodore for around 3-3.5 million per.

    Bam. Playoff team. I wish it was that simple!

  18. PDO says:

    Lets look at our top 6:

    Penner – Horcoff – Hemsky
    Nilsson – Gagner – Cogliano

    Okay. Where does Kessel fit in? And how the hell can we justify our top 6 getting SMALLER?!

    Basically, unless Hossa wants to sign here on the cheap for some ridiculous reason or Heatley is available for less than a deal that involves any of Horcoff/Hemsky/Gagner… I have no interest in any mythical one shot scorer, because he’s going to have wrinkles and he’s going to cost money.

  19. Lowetide says:

    PDO: I assume that when Lowe talked about first shot scorer he would have been thinking about the 2line. I have no idea which of the three he’d be moving off that line but Cogliano would probably be the likely choice since his style is better suited to the tougher minutes and he’s older than the other guy who may one day carry the mail (Gagner).

  20. Dennis says:

    LT: So, this magical guy shows up and then Cogs moves down to form the basis of a tough min line with Pisani? Torres or Moreau’s the LW on that line?

    We’ll start to know what’s happening once the draft comes along but I have a feeling the Oilers are pretty content to deal Raffi for a pick or part of a package and the other major questions:

    – stoll or reasoner
    – how much, if at all, for horc
    – what to do with pitkanen

    I think the Oilers might make things easy for Stoll by trying to low-ball him and every day that passes without him being re-inked, I think it means he’s closer to being an ex-Oiler. They know they have the leverage on him and they might have decided they’d like to end the “stoll/torres as secondary scoring” era because now they’ll farm those min to nilsson/gagner and perhaps cogs as well.

    There are a lot of ways they can go. Personally, I’d bring 14-16-25 back for one more year and try and make the playoffs but maybe they’re planning to spend Year 3 of Hemsky’s contract by moving out Pitkanen and replacing him with Souray and giving Glencross minutes that would normally go to Raffi.

  21. Bruce says:

    THe Oilers scored the 4th most goals in the Conf … Quick and dirty look (h)as the Oilers at 11th overall in terms of GF.

    Dennis: Don’t forget the 235 GF listed in the standings include shootout “goals”, a category where the Oilers easily led the league with 15. In terms of real actual goal goals, we had 220, tied for 8th in the West and tied for 17th overall. So not really a strength, but not a terrible weakness, just a little below average.

    The area that is in more serious need of repair is on the defensive side of the puck, where Oilers’ 247 “real” GA ranked a lowly 26th, better than just Toronto, L.A., Tampa and Atlanta. A lot of that can be written off to injuries and inexperience, but it absolutely must improve in 2008-09 for this team to have a fighting chance at the post season.

  22. Ducey says:


    You are right on. This team should score goals, especially with Horc back. Goals against is what killed the Oilers last year.

    Whats a “one shot scorer” anyway? Are there guys who take two shots to score? We are really talking someone with a good one timer.

    Kessel seems like he might be a little too one dimensional? Good shot and speed but little grit or defence?

    I would like to see some more deflections and mucking it up in the crease. Penner has been okay at hanging in there but doesn’t seem to deflect a lot for some reason.

    So yeah, like eveyone else here, if we are going to shake up the top 6 it should be for someone with skill but with the extra dimension of some size.

  23. PDO says:


    Isn’t that Joffrey Lupul? Anson Carter?

    I’d love a one shot-scorer here… but he has to be a first line guy, or I don’t see the point. I just don’t see how we get help from a guy with huge holes in his game, but can score 20-25 pretty goals.

    In other words, I’m not so sure we couldn’t use an upgrade on Penner on that #1 line, but I’m also not at all convinced we need to change the deck chairs on the #2 line.

  24. Lowetide says:

    PDO: Just to be clear: In MY world, the idea lineup would be:

    Extras: Reasoner, Jacques

    D Pairings
    Veteran D-Gilbert


    Which sends away Stoll, Greene and Moreau if there’s a buyer (if not then keep him and put JFJ on waivers).

    Defense needs improvement and I sign Reasoner because Brodziak and Pouliot probably need the insurance for one season.

    Having said all that, the Oilers have said they want a first shot scorer, which might mean Stoll and Greene go for someone who can play on the 2line and you move down Cogs to the 3line and move out Pouliot.

    I don’t really care, but if they trade Horcoff (and don’t laugh they could) then logic takes a holiday.

  25. PDO says:


    Then we’re on the exact same page, except switch Poo and Brodziak OR sign a Bobby Holik type to play that 3rd line role and make a decision between Poo and Brodziak.

  26. Coach pb9617 says:

    Pitkanen and Torres for Stuart and Kessel :)

  27. Jonathan says:

    Geez LT, I thought you read Gare Joyce’s book… ;)

    Seriously, though, there is so much bad stuff floating out there about Kessel that I really don’t want to see him acquired by Edmonton. If that’s the role we want filled, fill it with somebody else.

  28. StephenW24 says:

    This is totally off topic, but is there any way Dallas would look at moving trevor daley? I think he has played well in the playoffs and will only get better. Thoughts?

  29. Craig says:

    Here they go again! The Bruins trying to trade away a young skilled player before they even hit their prime. I hate them for that! They are always doing that! Look at Brad Boyes! He had a monster season this year. Who did the Bruins get in a trade for him? Dennis Wideman. Come on! How bout this Chiarelli? Why don’t you have a little patience and let Kessel develop more within the Bruins system instead of sending him off to become a great player for another team? I hate the Bruins front office!

  30. Bruce says:

    Craig: I can understand your frustration at losing Boyes, but don’t sell Wideman short.

    Sure Boyes scored 43 this year, but Wideman had one hell of a year. He played a tonne in all situations, finishing in the top 10 in the league in gross ice time (25:09 TOI/GP), posting some pretty damn good numbers across the board: 81 GP, 13-23-36, +11. According to Desjardins he was outstanding on both special teams (+32/-0 on the PP, +6/-19 on the PK, and very high “Gabe ratings” of +2.63 and +4.73 respectively).
    Given Boyes recently made a big splash as a rookie, I was surprised to find Wideman’s the younger of the two by about a year; and 25-year-old, 25-minute defencemen are gold. This year he did it on the cheap for just $600 K, but the RFA will be due a very healthy raise this summer. Boyes, who more than earned his $1.6 MM in 2007-08, recently re-upped for 4 years for $16 MM; Wideman may well get that much and more (likely using the Gilbert deal as a comparable).

    Bottom line: both players have thrived in their new environment. It was one hell of a swap, the best pure “hockey trade” of 2006-07.

  31. DMac says:

    When will people realize that the Boston sports media is as bad as Toronto!!! No one is interested in trading Phil Kessel. What kind of moron would trade a 20 year old kid on the verge of becoming a 20-30 goal guy for only $2.2M??? Especially after he “got the message” during the playoffs. He started playing in the tough areas, and winning battles for loose pucks. 11 hits in 82 regular season games; 5 hits in 4 playoff games.

    The major issue right now is getting rid of the $6M going to Murray and Axxxxellllssssonnnnn (I thinks that how the Finns spell Swedish names.) Murray is washed up, and Gumby is redundant in the system. Send him off to play defensive center in obscurity, and send Murray to the glue-factory. That horse is dead.

  32. DMac says:

    BTW- PDO, Kessel is bigger than all but Penner and Horcoff. He just hasn’t played as a 6-0, 200lb guy should.

    “Penner – Horcoff – Hemsky
    Nilsson – Gagner – Cogliano

    And how the hell can we justify our top 6 getting SMALLER?!”

  33. Dennis says:

    LT: I like the looks of your lineup and the only thing I’d change is I’d bring back Stoll for one last season of top six heavy lifting and I’d let Glencross go because it appears he might have overpriced himself and I don’t want to take a chance on paying a guy 1.5 + and him not being able to outscore in the top nine or make a difference at EV.

    27-10-83 – top six tough min
    12-89-13 – butter
    14-16-34 – top six tough min

    18-19 as extras depending on the price of 19, though I doubt he’d come back if he has to fight for a job. I’d like to get rid of Moreau altogether but we know it won’t happen.

  34. Lowetide says:

    Dennis: Your lineup is stronger at center which makes sense. I’d be okay with it.

  35. Dennis says:

    LT: I thought I posted this already and maybe I did but it got deleted but I’d like to bring back 14-16-25 for one more season and try and make the playoffs.

    Remember the playoffs?;)

  36. Richard says:

    It sounds like they will trade Kessel and I say good for Phil. The Bruins are losers going nowhere and I want to see all the skilled players go somewhere else. Look at Brad Stuart (Detroit) and Hal Gill (Pitts – although he is the biggest 6’7″ pussy in the league). Let them keep the Murrays and Sturms. I blame the series loss to the benching of Kessel. Sturm didn’t do much hitting either and Murray couldn’t find the one timers that were laid on his stick time after time. Anyway, I hope they do trade Phil, let him win a cup somewhere else, cause it’s never going to happen in Boston under the Jacobs family.

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