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On June 24, the Boston Bruins sent goaltender Linus Ullmark to the Ottawa Senators in a three-player trade that also sent goaltender Joonas Korpisalo to Boston and forward Mark Kastelic.

However, Fluto Shinzawa of The Athletic reports that the Bruins may consider buying out Korpisalo’s large contract just hours after the transaction was completed in order to free up cap space before the offseason.

TRADE ALERT: In exchange for C Mark Kastelic, G Joonas Korpisalo, and Boston’s original ’24 first-round draft pick (pick no. 25 overall), the #Sens have acquired G Linus Ullmark from the @NHLBruins. The #Sens will keep 25% of Korpisalo’s remaining salary as part of the deal.

Following the trade announcement, Shinzawa wrote, “If the Bruins do not believe Korpisalo is worth the investment, they could execute a buyout.” As a result, Brandon Bussi could start as (Jeremy) Swayman’s No. 2 in 2024–2025. On Monday, Bussi agreed to a $775,000, one-year, two-way contract.

Of Korpisalo’s $10,666,667 salary, the Bruins would be liable for $8 million if they were to buy him out. This is a result of the Senators’ decision to keep their salaries after trading for Linus Ullmark. The eight years would see the $8 million amount spread out.

However, as Shinzawa noted in his story, Boston has not made up its mind regarding Korpisalo’s status. Shinzawa cited an unnamed NHL general manager to support his claim.

One general manager texted Shinzawa, “Not sure” about the possible buyout.

In July 2023, Korpisalo agreed to a $20 million, five-year contract. He has a contract that pays an average of $4 million in cap hits annually through the end of the 2028 campaign.

Was the Linus Ullmark Trade Lost by the Bruins?
Shortly after it was made official, Shayna Goldman of The Athletic gave the Ullmark trade a grade. She indicated who she thought had won and lost the deal by giving the Senators a “A” and the Bruins a “C.”

In the end, Goldman stated, “Mark Kastelic and Joonas Korpisalo combined don’t equal nearly the value Ullmark brings to a lineup at the 25th pick in the NHL Draft on Friday.” Furthermore, none of these pieces immediately address Boston’s most pressing needs.

Shinzawa also pointed out in his own column that Ullmark was actually worth far less than what was being said in rumors.

“In any case, the Bruins’ need to take on Korpisalo’s contract serves as additional evidence of Ullmark’s market value, which is significantly lower than his anticipated performance in Ottawa,” Shinzawa wrote.

Nevertheless, if the Senators and Ullmark can work out an extension, they have a legitimate first-choice goaltender for the upcoming campaign and beyond.

As the NHL’s best goaltender in 2023, the former Bruins netminder took home the Vezina trophy. Despite having a less than stellar season in 2023–24, he managed a 22–10–7 record, a.915 save percentage, and 2.57 goals against average.

Is Ullmark Going to Leave or Stay?
Ullmark’s $20 million, four-year contract is coming to an end in just one year. On July 1, 2025, he will be free to sign with any team. Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun, however, claims that Ullmark and the Senators have already discussed an extension.

Bruce Garrioch
@SunGarrioch Bruce Garrioch · Follow
Ottawa has acquired Ullmark. Two sides collaborating on a #Sens extension

7:45 p.m. · June 24, 2024, 488 Response

“Ottawa has acquired Ullmark through trade. Garrioch wrote on X after the trade, “Two sides working on an extension #Sens.”

On June 20, David Pagnotta of The Fourth Period revealed that Ullmark included Ottawa on his list of teams he would not trade. If so, in order to finalize the trade, he would have needed to take the franchise off the list.

That does, however, leave open the possibility of Ullmark leaving in the summer of 2025 if Ottawa is unable to persuade him to remain.

The Bruins will begin negotiating an extension with Jeremy Swayman, who will be their starting goalie for the 2024–25 campaign; Swayman’s current contract expires on July 1.

The Bruins added $1.165 million in cap space after trading for Ullmark. Once Swayman signs the new contract, some of that will go toward his raise.

The Bruins “also need a top-two center, a scoring wing, and a left-shot defenseman,” according to Shinzawa, which they failed to acquire in the June 24 trade.


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