Just when you thought you’d heard every possible avenue the Bruins would go down this season, B’s general manager Peter Chiarelli has a curveball or two for everybody. According to a team source, the Bruins have held conversations with agent J.P. Barry and Carl Soderberg’s Swedish team about the Big Swede potentially finishing out the 2013 NHL season with the Bruins after his team’s Swedish Elite League playoffs are finished.
The mysterious 27-year-old Swedish prospect was originally dealt to the Bruins from the St. Louis Blues in exchange for goaltender Hannu Toivonen six years ago, but had been hesitant to leave his home country for the NHL. That might have changed this season after Soderberg finished with 31 goals and 60 points for Linkoping HC, and would be headed for potential NHL free agency dollars at the end of this year if he could put together a solid partial season performance in Boston.
The Bruins have held Soderberg on their reserve list during his career in Europe, so he wouldn’t have to pass through waivers in order to join the NHL club. It remains to be seen how well the Swede’s skills would translate from Sweden to North America, but Soderberg is a 6-foot-3, 210-pound forward with size and offensive skills. So he fits the ideal bill of things that the Bruins scouts are currently looking for across the NHL in trade acquisitions.
“He’s always been an intriguing prospect for us,” said Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli. “He’s big and offensively skilled, and obviously he’s having a monster season over in Europe this year.”
Holding Soderberg in their back pocket could potentially make the Bruins a little less desperate for forward help on the trade market as there are few internal solutions for the third line left wing gig aside from Jay Pandolfo, Daniel Paille, Jordan Caron and Providence prospect Ryan Spooner.
The Swedish Elite League playoffs begin next week, and Soderberg could conceivably join the Bruins as soon as his Linkoping HC club is eliminated from the postseason tournament.