Taylor Hall has yet to play a game with the Bruins, but he’s thinking about staying in Boston for the long term.
Late Sunday night into early Monday morning, the Bruins agreed to a deal with the Sabres to acquire Hall and Curtis Lazar. Speaking to reporters Monday, Hall shared that he’s had his eye on Boston since he was a draft prospect in 2010, when the Bruins almost had the chance to draft him.
Hall almost came to Boston when he was a free agent this past offseason, too.
“Really close. I was ready to come to Boston, and it didn’t work out. I had to choose between some other options, but I’ve always had respect for the Bruins organization and the city of Boston,” Hall said of his near-decision to join the Bruins.
“I came to Boston with (Tyler) Seguin in 2010 just before our draft and I loved the city. I love the fanbase and the way they care about hockey. Every time I’ve come to Boston since then, I’ve always really enjoyed my time there. It’s a city I have a lot of respect for as a sports city and I can’t wait to get there.”
Instead, Hall opted to sign a one-year, $8 million deal with the Sabres, and it hasn’t been a good season in Buffalo. The Sabres have a league-worst 26 points this season and were recently on an 18-game losing streak.
It hasn’t been a good season for Hall, either. The former Hart Trophy winner has scored just two goals in 37 games this season. In a regular 82-game season, Hall would be on pace for just four goals, which would be by far a career-low for him.
“I can’t really give you that answer right now,” Hall said when asked what went wrong with him and the Sabres this season. “It’s been a whirlwind of a year. It went pretty badly, obviously. Our first 10 we were above .500 then we had the COVID outbreak and we couldn’t get our footing after that.
“For myself obviously, it wasn’t the season I would’ve liked to have – not even close. These last few days, you do some soul searching and you look back on what you can do better. Looking forward to the future, I’m so happy to be a part of the Bruins. I can’t wait to play and be a part of a group like that.”
Now, Hall will make a car trip from Buffalo to Boston Monday evening and plans to play in Tuesday’s game against his now former team. The reason why the Bruins acquired Hall is pretty clear. They hope he can add scoring to a team that’s lacked scoring outside of their top line.
Hall said he hasn’t been told which line he’ll play on yet, but many expect him to play the left wing with David Krejci on the second line. Hall seemed excited about that possibility.
“He’s been a great player in our league for such a long time,” Hall said of Krejci. “I have a lot of respect for what he’s done in his career and how he can still play at a high level. It’s incredible, along with a lot of other guys on that team.
“He’s such a good puck mover, smart, can see the game, and can move really well out there. I haven’t been told who I’m playing on a line with or anything like that, but there’s a lot of great players on that team and I’m just excited to contribute however I can.”
🎥 New #NHLBruins winger @hallsy09 on coming to Boston: “I want to come and win games…that’s what makes me most excited…I really want to be a part of a winning team…however I can do that, I’m all in.” pic.twitter.com/V9HhHRN8MX
— Boston Bruins (@NHLBruins) April 12, 2021
Hall is set to be a free agent again when the offseason hits. While he wasn’t shy about sharing what’s on his mind for the future, Hall said he’s focused on turning his season around with a new team.
“I’d love to be a Bruin for a few years,” Hall said. “It’s obviously been a bad year for me personally. I need to play well. I need to contribute and most of all, I want to be part of a team that wins games. I really believe we can do that here. That’s just my main goal.”
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