Bruins trying to find right deal with Dougie

SUNRISE, Fla. -- Boston Bruins general manager Don Sweeney met with the agent for defenseman Dougie Hamilton on Wednesday night to discuss the restricted free agent’s upcoming contract.

“We had further discussions, as I will continue to do. I won’t be discussing or revealing anything of the things we’ve spoken about. We’re just trying to stay in good communication and find the solution,” Sweeney said.

Sweeney and J.P. Barry plan on meeting again during the NHL Draft this weekend.

“As much as we have to continue to go forward,” Sweeney said. “Dougie’s a real important part of our organization and we’ve made no bones about the fact that I want him to be a part of that and we’re going to explore every opportunity to do that.”

Sweeney realizes that other teams could extend an offer sheet to Hamilton, but the Bruins' GM hopes to have a deal in place by July 1.

“A perfect world it would be, yeah,” Sweeney said of getting Hamilton locked up by that date. “But you have to have two sides to make a deal and we’re going to continue to explore that communication as best we can to find the right deal.”

Hamilton, a former first-round selection (No. 9 overall) in the 2011 NHL Entry Draft, made $832,500 last season and is expecting a major pay raise with his upcoming contract, upwards of $7 million per season. Due to the salary cap, signing Hamilton to a long-term deal might be difficult for Boston.

If another team extends Hamilton an offer sheet, the Bruins will have seven days to match it. If Boston does not match it, Hamilton would become a member of that team that extended the offer.

Obviously, the 22-year-old Hamilton wants the best deal possible and the Bruins understand that.

“The situation is what it is and we’re just going to face it, communicate and find the right course to get a contract done,” Sweeney said.