“Just having a younger team, it will be fun. As a young player, I think that’s what you want and I’m looking forward to it… Just looking at their roster, it’s going to be a fun team to play on.”
With the NHL Draft upon us, trades are inevitable. Since the Tyler Seguin trade in 2013, the Boston Bruins haven’t been too active in the trade department. With new general manager, Don Sweeney, stepping in, there has already been some action from the B’s. Yesterday, the Bruins traded Carl Soderberg’s rights over to the Colorado Avalanche in exchange for a sixth round pick. After their disappointing 2014-2015 season, changes obviously needed to be made, but were they the right ones?
“I got a call from Don Sweeney and my agent as well,” said Hamilton on a conference call Friday. “I guess there was a lot of speculation about it and rumors and everything and I kind of thought something maybe might happen, but I wasn’t really sure. I guess when I heard I was obviously really excited and I’m really excited still. I’m pretty happy.”
Friday afternoon, Bruins fans everywhere were shaken up by the news that Dougie Hamilton had been dealt to the Calgary Flames for the 15th, 45th, and 52nd draft picks in the 2015 NHL Entry Draft. This now means that the Bruins have the 13th, 14th, and 15th pick in the first round due to Milan Lucic being traded to the L.A. Kings shortly after Hamilton.
Calgary Captain Mark Giordano made sure to give his newest teammate a call after news of the trade was announced.
“He called me pretty soon after the trade. I think for me that shows a lot about him and the organization and him as a leader,” said Hamilton. “He’s one of those players that you watch and look up to and try to learn from. For me I’m excited to be able to play with him and learn from him. He told me a lot of good things and I’m excited. It’s definitely nice to get that call.”
Dougie Hamilton was set to become a restricted free agent on July 1st. The 6’5” defenseman played in 72 games in the 2014-2015 season, registering 32 points (10 G, 32 A). Don Sweeney met with Hamilton’s agent last night, but he was obviously looking for something more than the Bruins could give him, and that is a long-term deal that was estimated to be around $5.5-$7 million dollars.
Hamilton is seen as one of the most promising young defenseman in the game, and he was highly sought after going into the offseason.
The Bruins cap space has been an issue for the past several seasons, and this upcoming season is no exception. With so many players needing to be signed back with the team, there are many more decisions needing to be made to get the team where they need to be. With last seasons trading away of the Bruins’ defenseman Johnny Boychuk, there is certainly question about what they will do regarding defenseman. Captain Zdeno Chara turned 38 this year, and so the amount of time he has left to play will certainly affect the Bruins.
This trade could either be disastrous or wonderful for the Bruins, but the Calgary Flames made out best in the deal at the moment. Depending on what the B’s do with their picks (i.e. keep them, trade them for player acquisitions etc.), this trade might not benefit the Bruins until much later, especially in the case of a draft pick. The Bruins have three picks in a row in the first half of the first round of the draft, so there is the potential for other trades for the picks.
“When you look at the players right now (on the blue line group), I think it’s a pretty special group,” Dougie said about fitting in with Calgary’s defense. “Definitely a tough team and tough defensive core to play against. I’m excited to be a part of it now. They’re all really good skaters, good puck movers, skilled and smart. I think I fit in well with that and it’s exciting”
Calgary has a young team, and that was a huge part of their success this season. Adding Dougie Hamilton to the mix just makes things that much better. As someone who has the potential to become an elite defenseman it’s a huge win for the Flames. They didn’t have to give up any players, and they still have a pick in the second round. Hamilton fits the Calgary mold and the probability of him prospering under Bob Hartley is likely.
“I think just watching those guys and seeing how successful they were and how good of players they are, it’s going to be a great opportunity for me. It’s one of those things that excites you about that,” Said Hamilton about what it means to be on a young, thriving team. “To be able to play with a lot of older guys that you can learn from and younger guys that you can play with. I think all of that is exciting and seeing the talent of those young guys. It just shows the direction the team is going. It’s going to be a fun team to play on and I’m happy I’m apart of it.”
Interview audio below: