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BOSTON – The Bruins are an NHL-best 33-5-4 after defeating the second-place Toronto Maple Leafs 4-3 on Saturday night at TD Garden.

This Bruins roster is deep at every position and has no obvious weaknesses. The B’s have scored the second most goals (158) and allowed the fewest (91). They own the league’s fourth-ranked power play (27.6 percent) and top-ranked penalty kill (85.6 percent).

What should be the team’s focus as the March 3 NHL trade deadline approaches?

The Bruins make a strong statement in a 4-3 win against the Leafs

A major upgrade, someone like Patrick Kane or Bo Horvath, would give the Bruins incredible firepower up front. But that kind of massive addition isn’t really necessary. Bolstering the squad’s depth in key positions, such as another goal-scoring winger and perhaps a top-four defender, would be ideal.

Bruins general manager Don Sweeney spoke to reporters after Saturday’s win regarding the team’s contract extension with forward Pavel Zacha. He was also asked about his initial thoughts on the trade deadline.

“You have to hope you stay healthy and I think we have a good hockey team. I think we’re deep, but we’re probably going to have to keep adding and filling out,” Sweeney said. “We’ve merged with some players who played particularly well in Providence and got an opportunity. so we’ll continue to evaluate that as the opportunity arises.

“There haven’t been many trades so far. We have to look forward. It’s going to take some creativity for clubs like ours, who have a number of major challenges, but chances are that most teams I hope we’ll have a chance to play in the playoffs generally have major challenges, and we’re no different. We will try to do our best to build the best team possible.”

We talked a lot back in October that this season could be the Bruins’ “Last Dance” with this veteran core. Patrice Bergeron and David Krejci are 37 and 36, respectively. Brad Marchand is 34 years old. Nine Bruins players could hit free agency this summer.

Does Swinney see the need to go all-in at the trade deadline to make the most of his team’s deep playoff opportunity?

“My job is to put the best team on the ice year in and year out, balance it out,” Sweeney said. “Live in the moment for what this group wants to try and accomplish and good for them. Like I said, a process driven group and we’ll look at things as they come and I’ll do the best job I can. for the organization”.

I think we’re deep, but we’ll probably have to keep adding and filling out.

Bruins GM Don Sweeney trade deadline

The Bruins currently have $4 million in cap space, per CapFriendly. That’s nothing, but it also may not be enough to acquire an impact player without giving up significant salary or saving the other team salary.

Sweeney has been quite aggressive with his roster at the trade deadline since taking over as Bruins general manager in 2015. In fact, he made at least one trade at all seven of those trade deadlines. He made multiple moves in some of those seasons.

The easy decision would be to do very little and not mess with a team that is on pace to have one of the best regular seasons in league history. But given the uncertain future of this roster, Swinney will need to make at least one meaningful upgrade to ensure the Bruins have the depth they need to win four rounds in the spring.


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