UFA of the Day: Loui Eriksson

AP
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Every day until June 30, we’ll write about a pending unrestricted free agent. Today’s UFA of the Day is…

Loui Eriksson

As of last week, the Bruins were still hoping to re-sign the 30-year-old winger who scored 30 goals for them last season.

“There have been some good discussions,” said GM Don Sweeney, per CSN New England. “The onus is on us to display what level we’re willing to commit to Loui, and as he knows on the door to free agency that is important to him. It comes down to how far we want to stretch.”

After missing the playoffs, the Bruins’ decision not to trade Eriksson at the deadline will look especially poor if he walks away for nothing this summer. But Sweeney can’t allow that to affect his thinking. What’s done is done, and if Eriksson wants more than the B’s are comfortable giving him, then both sides will have to move on.

If Eriksson tests the market, Vancouver is expected to be interested. The Canucks intend to sign a top-six winger to either play with the Sedins or provide second-line scoring, and with Radim Vrbata expected to leave, there’s cap space to do it.

As always, the two big questions for any UFA suitor will be how much and how long? The latter will be particularly interesting with Eriksson, who’s already played 725 games in the NHL. On the open market, he could demand in the neighborhood of $30 million over five years. So while signing him could be good for a team in the short term, there’s at least the potential for trouble down the line.

So before July 1, that’s what the B’s have to determine — is he worth it, and what’s the plan if he’s not?

“If we don’t find common ground with Loui then we’re going to have to replace him,” said Sweeney.

Click here for all our 2016 UFA profiles.