Anders Bjork is in the fold- the Boston Bruins announced the signing of one of their prized prospects today to a three-year entry-level contract.
There isn’t a great deal more to say that hasn’t been covered on this blog space about the now former Notre Dame Fighting Irish star. He has exceeded expectations to date and while the B’s wanted to sign him earlier and get him into the big lineup at the end of the regular season and possibly playoffs, ND’s extended run to the Frozen Four put the kibosh on that.
The offseason and a trip to the World Championships where he played sparingly with Team USA gave the B’s another opportunity to get his name on a contract, and so now it will be interesting to see where in the lineup he ends up. It won’t be just handed to him, but we have to think there were certain discussions that convinced him to forego his senior season and a chance to test unrestricted free agency (where the Blackhawks were already rumored to be circling like vultures) to stick with Boston.
Of course- Bjork has said publicly that the B’s said and did all the right things (you can check out his interview with CBS Boston.com’s Matt Kalman here), so ultimately- fans should give both sides credit here for getting a deal done and one of the organization’s top prospects into the pro ranks where he could have a chance to make an immediate impact. Just don’t ask us to project where he’s going to be in the Boston lineup- it’s late May. Let’s see what happens next, first.
Now, it’s onto the offseason, the expansion draft, entry draft and what should be a decision point for Don Sweeney to perhaps make a trade or three to free up some breathing room in the organization while upgrading his NHL roster in the process. He has the organizational assets to do something, and with Bjork on board, flexibility to pare things down a bit and streamline.
This whole re-tooling on the fly thing seems to be working out well enough…
Glad to hear he signed but seems now some of debrus heinen vatrano bjork jfk have to pan out and step up or some have to be moved…core is getting old need to retool quickly if possible….but like to see them have the options….now what they do with the assets will determine the next 3-5 years methinks.
1. This very much highlights that neither money nor “getting away from Boston” were key motivating factors for Bjork. The Bruins gave him the option of hitting RFA status after 2018-19 [by signing during last season] and he opted for the more typical path [signing his 3 year ELC during the offseason.
2. He was on the US team for the Worlds along with new eammate Charlie McCoy. I wonder how much the two talked about Boston.
3. The training camp competition at top 6 wing is going to be very interesting, with Bjork, Heinen, DeBrusk, and Vatrano (among others) competing for at least 1, possibly 2 slots. There should be good competitionamong bottom 6 forwards also.