Bruins’ Jake DeBrusk, a crumbling relationship with Bruce Cassidy and the beginning of the end – The Athletic


The last time Jake DeBrusk played for the Bruins, he was on the ice for the deciding goal against in the team’s 5-2 loss to the Rangers on Nov. 26. He was a healthy scratch on Sunday against Vancouver.

Whether he dresses for the Bruins again remains to be seen.

Trade requests are not uncommon. What is unusual in this case, though, is that Bruins president Cam Neely confirmed what Rick Valette, DeBrusk’s agent, first told TSN and reiterated to me: that he has asked for his client to be moved. 

In other words, both team and player are fine with publicizing news of the request. It signals that both sides acknowledge a separation would be best for all involved.

Whether a deal is imminent is unknown. Tire-kicking general managers who know a player wants out are not prompt to show their best hands. The 25-year-old DeBrusk is in the second season of a two-year, $7.35 million contract. This year, he is earning $4.85 million in salary, a steep sum for a down-in-the-dumps left wing with six points in 17 games. Teams in pandemic recovery are not raising their hands to do their rivals economic favors.

At least one high-ranking member of the organization once believed DeBrusk was capable of scoring 40 goals because of his speed, fearlessness and touch around the net. The No. 14 pick from 2015 scored 27 goals in 2018-19. He looked like a long-term No. 2 left wing behind Brad Marchand.

But DeBrusk, formerly a net-front regular on the No. 1 power-play unit, pinballed around the lineup for parts of the last three seasons as both he and his coach chased solutions.


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