A couple of Bruins notes following the signing of restricted free agents Torey Krug and Reilly Smith.
First, Ville Leino has been released from his tryout, according to general manager Peter Chiarelli. No real surprise there. Leino was a long shot to make the team after being bought out by the Sabres. When Smith signed — and combined with the positive play of veteran Simon Gagne (also on a tryout) — Leino’s chances became nil.
Second, B’s fans that were worried about Johnny Boychuk’s status with the club have to be buoyed by Chiarelli’s remarks on the cap-friendly deals that Krug and Smith signed.
“They understand what we’re trying to do here,” said Chiarelli. “They understand the ultimate goal is to win and keep a strong core.”
Boychuk is certainly a member of that Boston core. Only Zdeno Chara logged more minutes last season than the 30-year-old right-shooting defenseman. It was the Bruins’ cap crunch, along with Boychuk’s pending UFA status and $3.4 million cap hit, that led to the trade speculation.
Chiarelli might still make a trade to give the Bruins some cap flexibility. It just may not have to include a key player like Boychuk now.