Straight from the Boston Bruins website:
BOSTON, MA – Boston Bruins General Manager Peter Chiarelli announced today, February 7, that the team has traded goaltender Tim Thomas to the New York Islanders in exchange for a conditional second round pick in 2014 or 2015. Chiarelli will address the media regarding the transaction today at 6:15 p.m. ET.
Thomas, who captured the Vezina and Conn Smythe Trophies during the Bruins Stanley Cup championship run in 2011, elected to take the 2012-13 season off and was suspended by the club after he did not report to training camp. The 2012-13 season marked the final year of four-year contract with the Bruins worth an annual NHL cap figure of $5,000,000.
We knew this was going to happen should the opportunity presented itself. As a Bruins fan, I loved Tim Thomas. I loved where he came from, what he had to do to get to the NHL and the accomplishment of earning the Vezina, Conn Smythe and, most importantly, the Stanley Cup.
He was a hero in Boston: Then the wheels came off—the political wheels, that is.
As soon as the Cup was won, his political beliefs were in full drive, and he did something that I do not recall any other player ever did—refused the visit to the White House to be congratulated by the president.
During this time, he used Facebook to publicly air out his opinions to the point where the media hounded him about his opinions. This created a thorn in his side.
The final straw was that he decided to take a sabbatical in his final year of his contract. Do some players need the time off? Sure they do. But when you are in the cap world, a team that is ripe with talent and with a cap space so small you cannot fit a dime in it, the $5 million cap space that GM Chiarelli could not hide or manipulate made it far too hard to ignore.
Chiarelli does not have the time nor the patience for such antics. He believes that if you want to be on the team, you need to work with him so that he has a winning formula.
Past players under his tenure have been presented this mantra, and in recent history there have been players that tried to rock that boat to get more money.
Chiarelli would send a message and it would be loud and clear. This is what I have, this is what I want to keep. In order for me to do that, and to fairly pay you, this is what I can offer.
One such player that tried to hold out is now in Toronto wearing number 81. For his hold out, Chiarelli acquired numbers 19 and 27 who are playing in the Boston roster today. Jared Knight was also a great pick, and he will be a force to be reckoned with when he is developed in the successful Providence Bruins system.
Another player that wanted more and was let go is wearing number 73 in Dallas. Micheal Ryder was not signed by the Bruins after he wanted a salary that would have been not so cap friendly.
When it call came down to it, Thomas could have rode out his last year and went off into the sunset or played elsewhere. Instead he put his team in a bind and let his team mates down. Outwardly, they are understanding and respect Thomas' wishes to do what needs to be done.
The sum of its parts outweighed what Tim Thomas had to do for Tim Thomas. Chiarelli believes in the core of the current roster and wants nothing to do with breaking them up. If that means that he has to bid farewell to some good players to keep the ones that want to wear the Spoked B, so be it.
As a fan, I wish him well and hope he is successful in the last few years of his career—as long as it is not successful against the Black and Gold.
This is Cory Ducey saying "Hit Hard, Keep It Clean, and God Bless, Timmy."
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