Guest Author - Kevin Thorburn
The Boston Bruins traded star centre Joe Thornton to the San Jose Sharks for Marco Sturm, Brad Stuart and Wayne Primeau. Both teams have similarly dismal records, which usually prompts something big to take place.
Thornton will make $6.6 million this year, while the three players coming to Boston will make a combined $5 million. Essentially this looks like a salary dump. Is there something about the three new Bruins that make this look like anything else? Sturm has potential, but has yet to show it and is one year older than Thornton. Stuart finished second in voting for Rookie of the Year during his first season, but has been criticized since for his lackluster play. Primeau is a fourth liner that earns his way by using his size.
Currently Thornton is eleventh in NHL scoring and is a franchise player. These types of players don’t come available very often, but the question is whether San Jose has the talent to back him up and make use of these talents to benefit the team.
Thornton was very surprised by the trade. He received a phone call from General Manager, Mike O’Connell after just finishing having supper out with his parents to let him know about the trade. O’Connell’s job is rumoured to be on the line and Thornton attributes the trade to the fact that something big had to be done to try to turn the season around for Boston. Bruins fans love Thornton and aren’t likely to be pleased to see him leave. This does not look like a potentially job saving move for O’Connell.
In summary: San Jose gets one of the league’s premiere players and Boston gets a few players with the talent to be potentially decent. Then, of course, there is the $1.6 million savings.