For those who haven't heard, earlier this week the Ottawa Senators bought out Bobby Ryan. Ryan had two years left on his contract paying him 7.25 million per year. With the buy out the Senators save about 3.7 million dollars. Ryan also won the Masterton Trophy this year for overcoming his alcohol abuse and for publically sharing his story to convince others to get the help they need. After missing most of the season for treatment in his first home game back he scored a hat trick. Rumors have connected Ryan and the Bruins for years and now that he is a UFA maybe it's time he joins the Black and Gold.
Let's start by taking a look back at where the Ryan to Boston story starts. Bobby Ryan was traded to the Senators back on July 5th, 2013 for Jakob Silfverberg, Stefon Noeson, and a 2014 first-round pick. However, almost a full year prior the Ryan to Boston rumors were everywhere. The most prevalent of these rumors was a Ryan for Krejci swap. At the time Bobby Ryan was one of the best up-and-coming snipers in the league. Prior to the lockout-shortened 2012-13 season, Ryan had four straight 30 goal seasons with a high of 71 points.
At the same time, Krejci was coming into his own as one of the Bruins offensive leaders. In his four years before the lockout, Krejci finished top three in team scoring. Krejci finished with 73, 52, 62, and 62 points in those seasons. So while Bobby Ryan looked like a can't miss sniper for the next ten years David Krejci also looked like he could be the Bruins second or even first-line center for the same amount of time. According to this Bleacher Report article from later that year Bruins, GM Peter Chiarelli told the Ducks both Krejci and Lucic were unavailable. Interesting that Lucic was included in this as well. Could a Ryan for Lucic trade have been on the table at one point?
Flash forward eight years to now and Bruins management might still have a soft spot for Bobby Ryan. His time in Ottawa was filled with missed expectations injuries and a battle with alcohol addiction. If you would like more on that story and some more information on Ryan’s past here is an article covering it. Bobby Ryan wasn't a bad player for the Senators but he never lived up to his 7.25 million dollar contract.
In 455 games for Ottawa, he scored 266 points with 107 goals and 159 assists. Now with his demons behind him and feeling better than he has in years could he provide some cheap scoring depth for the Bruins? Just last year in the 2018-19 season Ryan scored 42 points with 15 goals and 27 assists in 78 games. Of those 42 points, 16 came one the power-play including 7 power-play goals. While Bobby Ryan is now 33 he is still 6’2” and over 200lbs. He has also topped 100 hits seven times in his career something only four Bruins did last season. With his scoring touch and size, Ryan could be exactly what the Bruins need.
The Bruins would be smart to at least inquire with Ryan’s camp as to what his asking price would be. If Ryan is willing to sign between 1-2 million he would be a great low-risk high reward signing. Ryan also has the versatility to play either wing but is a right shot.
With that in mind if injuries happen and they always do Ryan could move around the lineup with relative ease. His size and scoring touch make him a great fit on the Coyle line. What could we expect in a third line second power-play unit role? Honestly, we just don't know. How much his game suffered because of his off-ice habits is something we can't see until he plays again. I'm not saying he returns to the 30 goal player he once was but a refocused dedicated Bobby Ryan could surprise a lot of people. I for one would love to see him in the Black and Gold next season. As always until next time stay safe out there and LET’S GO BRUINS!!
Featured image courtesy of Sean Kilpatrick/The Canadian Press.