Chiarelli believes Krug, Smith deals give cap-crunched Bruins ‘flexibility’

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With the summer off-season only a few months away — feels odd writing that because the playoffs haven’t started yet — the Boston Bruins will have a number of decisions to make, with pending unrestricted free agents and restricted free agents, as they try to squeeze in under the salary cap.

(It’s not yet known exactly what the salary cap will be for next season, although it’s expected to be in the range of $71 million to $73 million, according to a report in late January.)

On Friday, the Bruins took care of some of that business, announcing they had signed defenseman Torey Krug to a one-year, $3.4 million deal and forward Reilly Smith to a two-year, $6.85 million deal.

The Bruins, facing a cap crunch that limited what they were able to do at this week’s trade deadline, are nearing $58 million committed to 13 players for next season, according to the Boston Globe.

But general manager Peter Chiarelli believes these two deals will give the Bruins some room to move going forward.

“These are players we always liked and have a bright future for us. Term was important. It’s shorter term and gives us more flexibility and it gives them more flexibility as far as performing on a short term platform and becoming more of a fixture of us going forward,” said Chiarelli, as per CSN New England.

“The one and two year terms were important to us. These were deals that came about, the ideas and the philosophies came out a little bit more after we signed the one year deals.”