In what can only be described as a nightmare to a dream scenario Taylor Hall and Curtis Lazar have been traded from Buffalo to Boston. Hall and Lazar have been sent to Boston in exchange for a 2021 2nd round pick and Anders Bjork. Hall’s full no-move clause is the main reason behind the underwhelming return. That means any possible trade would need his approval. Here is an article from Elliot Friedman confirming Boston was Hall’s top choice. Boston and Hall have been connected for over a year with rumors of a trade swirling even last season. Here is another article from then when Hall was with Arizona talking about a possible trade. Now let’s take a look at the two newest Bruins forwards.
Taylor is the bigger addition of the two players. Depending on what you think of him Taylor Hall was the biggest fish available this year and the Bruins caught him. The first overall pick in 2010 and league MVP of the 2017-18 season Hall is a huge boost to the Bruins top-six. The six-time 20 goal scorer has 582 points in 664 games played. We all know what Taylor Hall can bring to a team when he is on his game. However, there are plenty of stories out there that paint him in a very negative light. Hall has been called some negative things over his career. I will be addressing some of these claims in another Taylor Hall article as well as going deeper into some of the numbers. Now let’s move on to the second player coming to Boston.
Curtis Lazar is the second half of the Bruins return in this deal. Lazar was drafted 17th overall in 2013 by the Ottawa Senators. In his draft year, Lazar played 72 games in the WHL scoring 38 goals and 61 points. The following season in just 58 games he scored 41 goals and 76 points. The Senators thought they had something in Lazar and brought him straight to the NHL. Unfortunately, for Ottawa Lazar wasn’t quite ready for the NHL and only scored 36 points in his 176 games with the team. The Calgary Flames acquired Lazar in a trade on March 1st, 2017. Calgary just like Ottawa would try Lazar in the NHL first where in 70 games he would score just 15 points over three seasons. Finally, during the 2018-19 season, Lazar would spend 57 games in the AHL where he scored 20 goals and 41 points.
Lazar would then sign with the Buffalo Sabres before the 2019-20 season. Starting in the AHL Lazar had 14 points in 18 AHL games. Those totals earned him an NHL call-up. In 38 games Lazar would score 10 points play just under 12 minutes per game and only be a minus 3. This season with Buffalo Lazar averaged over 13 minutes per game and scored 9 points in 33 games. He has developed into an effective bottom-six forward capable of playing either center or wing. Lazar is also not afraid to throw a few hits with 617 in just 319 games.
How Taylor Hall and Curtis Lazar Fit/Final Thoughts
So far both players have looked right at home in black and gold. Hall scored his first goal today and has looked dangerous on Krejci’s wing. Lazar has transformed the fourth line into a threat every time it’s on the ice. The energy and drive Lazar plays with centering that line has finally made it dangerous again. While Hall looks to make his mark on the power play Lazar likely makes his mark on the penalty kill. Both players adding another dimension to the Bruins special teams.
Hopefully, both players will be here for a few years to come. Lazar is still under contract next season and Hall by his own words is open to an extension. Here is a recent interview where he even says as much. Are they enough to put this team over the top? We just don’t know. With all the injuries the Bruins have gone through finally seeing this team healthy will go a long way to knowing if they can win the Cup. As I mentioned earlier keep an eye out for the Hall-focused article coming soon. Until then stay safe out there and LET’S GO BRUINS!
Featured image courtesy of the Boston Bruins website.