BOSTON (CBS) — The Boston Bruins have traded goaltender Tim Thomas to the New York Islanders.
The trade was first reported by the Twitter account @Eklund and was confirmed minutes later by several reporters on Twitter. The Bruins and Islanders officially announced the news within an hour of the reports.
The Bruins will receive a second-round pick, either in 2014 or 2015. TSN’s Bob McKenzie reported via Twitter that the Bruins will only receive that draft pick if Thomas either reports to the Islanders or if the Islanders trade his rights.
Thomas, 38, is in the midst of sitting out the final year of his contract, which was set to have him earn $3 million. He announced last June that he intended to miss the entire 2012-13 season in order to “reconnect with the three F’s: Friends, Family, and Faith.”
It’s not yet definite whether he’ll be playing at all for the Islanders, but the trade appears to mostly be for salary-cap purposes.
Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli said in a conference call Thursday evening that he doesn’t necessarily expect Thomas to play this season.
“Nothing would suggest to me that he’s coming back this season,” Chiarelli said.
The Islanders, meanwhile, can add Thomas’ $5 million cap hit without having to actually pay money, so if they do make any moves in the coming months, they won’t need to worry about potentially dropping underneath the salary floor.
Islanders general manager Garth Snow did not add much in terms of divulging the team’s plans for Thomas.
“We have acquired an asset for our organization,” Snow said in a team release. “This acquisition allows us flexibility with our roster moving forward.”
The trade will remove a $5 million hit from the Bruins’ salary cap.
Prior to sitting out, Thomas had won two Vezina Trophies, a Stanley Cup and a Conn Smythe Trophy with the Bruins.