The NHL trade deadline is Wednesday at 3 p.m. and if the last few years are any indication, expect the Bruins to make a move or two - albeit nothing that would be termed a blockbuster. Last season, Boston GM Peter Chiarelli traded for Jaromir Jagr. In 2012, he picked up Greg Zanon and Brian Rolston in separate moves. Finally, in the year they won their most recent Stanley Cup – 2011 - they fortified their team by acquiring Rich Peverley and Chris Kelly, two players that helped them immensely.
What makes this particular year so hard to predict is that there are really only five teams that could be considered completely out of the running for the playoffs, in the Islanders, Panthers, Sabres, Flames and Oilers. That means that the price for most players will be inflated, one of the many reasons you can’t expect someone like Islanders forward Thomas Vanek to be in Black and Gold this week.
That said, here are five players from those aforementioned clubs that could be traded to Boston in the coming days:
1. Andrew MacDonald, Islanders defenseman
From Boston’s perspective, New York’s top defenseman is the top prize of this trade deadline. He has four goals and 20 assists and the 27-year-old is headed for unrestricted free agency this summer. It would take multiple prospects and high draft picks to obtain him.
2. Christian Ehrhoff, Sabres defenseman
The Bruins got an up close and personal look at Ehrhoff Wednesday when he had an assist and was plus-2 in 21:17 of ice time. He’s more of an offensive defenseman and weapon on the power play than a shutdown-style defenseman like Dennis Seidenberg (which is what they’re trying to temporarily replace). Ehrhoff was on the Canucks in 2011, so he has big-game experience.
3. Mike Cammalleri, Flames winger
The former Canadian has seen his production (13 goals, eight assists) really drop in perpetually rebuilding Calgary and his long-term deal ends this season. Boston’s second and third lines have been good, but he would have some value for the postseason. He’s experienced and would likely be reinvigorated to come to a winning environment.
4. Lubomir Visnovsky, Islanders defenseman
He is 37 with a cap hit of $4.7 million with a year left on his contract. However, the Slovakian has only played in 16 games this season so he figures to have plenty in the tank down the stretch. He’s a left-handed shot and good skater so he would fit the profile of someone the Bruins would like.
5. Matt Moulson, Sabres winger
Moulson will make some contender happy: this is a guy that scored 30-plus goals for the Islanders in three straight seasons. This season, he’s put up 17 goals and 19 assists and he was dealt to Buffalo by the Islanders in October. It would be stunning to see Moulson stay in Buffalo as he is an unrestricted free agent this summer.
Follow Metro Boston Bruins beat writer Richard Slate on Twitter: @RichSlate