Boston Bruins

Jeremy Swayman reacts to Linus Ullmark rumors ahead of trade deadline

The NHL trade deadline is 3 p.m. ET on Friday.

NBC Universal, Inc.

BOSTON -- Jeremy Swayman and Linus Ullmark have been two of the Bruins' best players this season. Goaltending has been the team's biggest strength and the primary reason why the Original Six franchise sits one point behind the Florida Panthers for the best record in the Eastern Conference.

It would be a bold move to break up this duo.

But with the NHL trade deadline set for 3 p.m. ET on Friday, there's still the possibility -- even if it's a small one -- that the Bruins could move Ullmark if they find a deal that addresses a roster weakness. The Bruins could use another left-shot defenseman and/or middle-six forward, for example.

Swayman was asked about Ullmark's future after Thursday's 4-1 win over the Toronto Maple Leafs at TD Garden.

“I mean, that guy is my brother for life. He’s a huge reason why we’ve had success every year. I have no doubt that,” Swayman said, and then paused for a moment before continuing.

”There’s not going to be any surprises, hopefully. I love that guy to death. Whatever happens, happens. It’s a business. I know it just as well. Whatever happens, happens. We’ve dealt with it over the years. I don’t even want to think about that.”

The Bruins have just $57,500 in salary cap space right now, per CapFriendly, and one of the few ways for them to create room under the cap would be trading a player off the NHL roster.

Ullmark's contract runs through next season with a $5 million cap hit, as well as a no-trade clause that gives him the ability to veto a move to 16 teams. The Bruins also don't have many valuable draft picks or quality prospects to trade, so if they want to make upgrades before the trade deadline, it might require moving players off the NHL roster.

However, in-season goalie trades, especially those involving a former Vezina Trophy winner like Ullmark, are pretty rare. And if you look at the landscape of the league entering Friday, there aren't many teams that desperately need a new goaltender for the final month of the regular season and playoffs.

The New Jersey Devils could really use a goalie upgrade, but they reportedly are "still pushing" for Calgary Flames netminder Jacob Markstrom, per ESPN' Emily Kaplan. The Devils probably won't even make the playoffs, so you could argue it makes more sense for them to make a substantial goalie trade in the offseason.

There are pros and cons to trading Ullmark, but there's no rush for the Bruins to do something now. He's not a free agent until the summer of 2025.

Contact Us