Bold Boston Bruins gear up for post-season run, add Anaheim Ducks veteran Hampus Lindholm

The Boston Bruins, looking to add depth in the backline as they fight for a playoff spot in the NHL Eastern Conference, have landed one of the most prominent defensive players in the commercial market.

Two days before the league’s trading deadline, the Anaheim Ducks sent veteran defender Hampus Lindholm to the Bruins for a big package that includes Boston’s first-round pick in this summer’s draft.

Boston also sent defending men Urho Vaakanainen, John Moore, and second-round picks in 2023 and 2024 to complete the deal. The Bruins also got defenseman Kodie Curran in the pack from Anaheim.

“Hampus has been a fixture with the ducks for years, and we appreciate and respect them,” Pat Verbeek, general manager of the Anaheim Foundation, said in a statement. “However, we are very happy to be back. As I have mentioned since arriving in Anaheim, our goal is to continue to build a team that can compete for the Stanley Cup for the long term. Adding age-appropriate players and assets from the young talent we have sets us well for the future.”

Lindholm, 28, was Anaheim’s first-round pick in 2012, scoring 222 points in 582 career games there. The 6-4, 216-pound veteran is the third-all-time hitter among defenders in franchise history, and will help the Bruins face off on the backline with other powerhouse teams in the East, as well as potentially in the power game.

The Bruins, who beat the Winnipeg Jets, 4-2, Friday night, finished first in the East wild card as play began on Saturday. Ultimately, Boston, with 82 points, wants to slip into third place in a playoff in the Atlantic Division, which is included by the Toronto Maple Leafs (83). An escape from the wild card berth would allow the Bruins, in the first round, to dodge one of the Eastern Division winners, possibly the top seed, who will likely be either the Florida Panthers or the Carolina Hurricanes.

Lindholm will help a defense that is still trying to boost their chemistry against a relatively new goal. With Tuukka Rask officially retired, Boston will head into the post-season with Linus Ullmark and Jeremy Swayman at the net, a duo who amassed 36 wins this season but are largely unproven in post-season play.

The ducks would keep 50% of Lindholm’s salary, which helped seal the deal. Lindholm, who will be an unrestricted free agent this summer if Bruins doesn’t secure a long-term deal with him, will carry a maximum salary of $2.6 million to Boston.

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