Boston Bruins should target Vegas Golden Knights center in free agency this summer

Chandler Stephenson of the Vegas Golden Knights is a center that Boston Bruins GM Don Sweeney should consider going after in free agency this summer.
Vegas Golden Knights v Dallas Stars - Game Seven
Vegas Golden Knights v Dallas Stars - Game Seven / Cooper Neill/GettyImages

Last Wednesday, Boston Bruins GM Don Sweeney met with the media and said that he is going to be aggressive this summer in free agency. Honestly, why not? He has a ton of cap space available to make major improvements to the roster and bring back a much better team for the 2024-25 season.

At the top of his needs list, this summer is a top center in free agency. The free agent center market is less than appealing after some of the top names. One name that has been linked to the Black and Gold is Elias Lindholm, a player that Sweeney kicked the tires on at the trade deadline earlier this year. He never got a deal done and ended up going from the Calgary Flames to the Vancouver Canucks in February. He is expected to test the free agent market on July 1 and whether or not he’s going to be available and in Sweeney’s price range remains to be seen.

If Sweeney can't get Lindholm or decides to go in a different direction, he should look no further than a Vegas Golden Knights free agent.

Boston Bruins should target Chandler Stephenson of the Golden Knights

A very good option this summer up the middle for Sweeney is Chandler Stephenson of the Vegas Golden Knights. The 6-foot-0, 209-pound left shot is coming off a season when he had 16 goals and 35 assists while averaging 18:29 a night. He’s strong at the face-off dot, winning 52.6% of his draws, He had four power-play goals and 17 power-play points. Last season during Vegas’ run to winning the Stanley Cup, he had 10 goals and 10 assists in 22 playoff games, winning a postseason career-high 53.4% of his draws.

Stephenson has been a big part in the last two seasons of the Golden Knights top-six for former Bruins coach Bruce Cassidy and he’s produced on the playoff stage. Elliotte Friedman linked him to the Black and Gold last week on his 32 Thoughts podcast and it makes too much sense in the bigger picture. He's coming off a contract that carried a $2.75 million AAV and yes, while he'll get a pay raise, it wouldn't be near the amount of Lindholm.

If Lindholm is not an option, then Stephenson is a very good backup plan and maybe someone that Sweeney should target right away once free agency opens.