There won’t be any return engagement for Kris Versteeg in the Bruins’ organization.
Boston’s fifth-round pick in 2004, who was traded to Chicago by Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli for short-timer Brandon Bochenski in 2007, was dealt today by Toronto to Phildelphia for a the Flyers’ first- and third-round picks in this June’s draft.
The price was pretty steep, but Versteeg is a two-time 20-goal scorer with the potential for more on a team as deep as the Flyers. Plus he’s signed through the end of next season at a cap hit a little north of $3 million. So the Flyers should get a decent run out of Versteeg, which makes giving up a decent chunk of the future worth it for the team that sits atop the Eastern Conference and is one season removed from playing for the Stanley Cup.
Philadelphia sits second overall in the NHL and is already third in goals score per game. The Flyers’ 5-on-5 goals for/goals against ratio is second only to the Bruins.
It’s doubtful Toronto would’ve traded Versteeg within the division for the same price, especially in light of the recent history between the Bruins and Maple Leafs in the trade market. Plus, if Chiarelli and his brass didn’t like Versteeg’s game much four years ago, their opinion might not have changed.
But the Flyers have bolstered their front line with two weeks to go until the trade deadline. Expectations for the Bruins to make a counter move before Feb. 28 have now increased.