The rumors never end for the Boston Bruins as they now reportedly have interest in acquiring Arizona Coyotes‘ winger Conor Garland. The Garland/Boston rumors aren’t new, however, as this rumor started around this season’s trade deadline but went quiet after the B’s acquired Taylor Hall and Garland ultimately wasn’t moved.
But, the rumor of the Black and Gold having interest in Garland started up again this past Friday as David Pagnotta of NHL Network Radio that the ‘Yotes are “very much trying” to trade the restricted free agent (RFA) winger.
Pagnotta then went on to state that the B’s are among several other teams that have “checked in” on the 25-year-old winger. Of course, with Garland being a RFA, Boston could always offer sheet him, but then Arizona could just match it. Trading for him for eliminate that possibility.
Garland being moved seems like a strong possibility right now. As of this report, there haven’t been any contract discussions between Garland’s party and the Coyotes so far this offseason. But who knows, maybe Arizona is waiting until after the expansion draft to start discussions.
Conor Garland would be a welcomed addition to the Bruins.
Depending on what the B’s give for him, I’m almost certain that every Boston fan would be ecstatic about adding Garland. He’s a Massachusetts native and gives the Black and Gold some great scoring depth at wing.
Garland may not be the big and physical player that many are saying the B’s need to take the next step, but he would give Charlie Coyle a great scoring threat on the wing. Coyle’s left wing, Nick Ritchie, has a chance of being selected in the expansion draft as he’s exposed, but either one of Jeremy Lauzon or Connor Clifton will be taken by Seattle.
A third line of Ritchie, Coyle, and Garland would work nicely, in my opinion. You have Ritchie the net-front presence, Coyle the puck and play controller, and then Garland the skill. Ritchie just sits in front of the net like he does now, Coyle controls the puck waiting for Garland to get open. Of course it’s a bit more complicated than just that, but I think that would be the overall dynamic of the line.
Some are probably asking, “What about DeBrusk?” There’s a strong possibility that DeBrusk is traded this offseason. And it may be in a trade for Garland. If he’s still somehow on the team when the 2021-22 season starts, he could be the fourth-line left wing or you could have him in Ritchie’s spot and Ritchie plays 4LW.
Overall, Garland would add some insurance when it comes to scoring depth. Over the last two seasons, Garland has totaled 34 goals and 78 points in 117 games. In 2019-20, he scored 22 goals and 39 points in 68 games while averaging just over 14 minutes a game. This season, he didn’t score as much with just 12 goals, but matched his career-best 39 points from the season prior in 19 less games but averaging nearly four more minutes a game.