The Bruins made a couple of deals at the trade deadline and made their team better in the process. What they didn’t do, besides trade winger Loui Eriksson, is improve enough to win a championship in 2016. Now, if John-Michael Liles and Lee Stempniak were the magical keys to success this Bruins team needed to win a cup, then I’ll take back every bad thing I’ve ever said or will say. I just don’t see it.
As the clock ticked past 3pm yesterday, the Bruins trades trickled in after months of speculation about what they’d do. They picked up a forward who will help solidify the lineup moving forward, and defenseman to add to an exceptionally weak backend. In the process, they got rid of a second, third, fourth, and fifth round pick, as well as a prospect with a low ceiling. I’m all for getting rid of picks if it helps the current roster get better, but for a 35 year old defenseman and a guy who’s been traded the last 3 trade deadlines, I’m not sure I agree with the moves.
Losing the picks not only hurts the Bruins chances of developing talent in the long run, it also hinders the development of younger guys currently on the roster. If the goal isn’t to win a cup, then what are these guys doing here besides taking the spot of a young player who can develop? Perhaps the worst part about losing the draft picks, is that the Bruins will be extremely limited in their ability to sign a restricted free agent to an offer sheet. Even though players rarely ever get signed to an offer sheet, it’s still nice to have it as an option.
The Bruins didn’t trade Loui Eriksson, and now the only way they can salvage some value out of him, is to trade him to a team before July 1st, but all the other team would have is exclusive rights to negotiate until that date. That move wouldn’t make sense for Eriksson or the team acquiring his rights. If he doesn’t end up signing a contract with the Bruins, the Seguin trade, sigh, turns into a straight up swap of Joe Morrow for Tyler Seguin and that sucks.
The whole thing just doesn’t make sense. If the Bruins were to try to win a cup this season, they’d need significantly more talent on the blue line. If we were playing for the future, why the hell did we get rid of 4 upcoming draft picks and not trade Eriksson for more assets? I’d love to speculate on what the Bruins plan is moving forward but there’s just no way to tell at this point. I don’t even think GM Don Sweeney has a concrete plan at this point. What we know for sure is:
- -Zdeno Chara is old and has an alarming cap hit. He could potentially be moved this summer merely for cap relief, but hopefully for more.
- -Loui Eriksson wants too much money for too many years and likely won’t be back next year.
- -Brad Marchand is an unrestricted free agent after next season, so he will likely sign an extension this offseason.
- -The Bruins need about 3 top 4 defensemen. Look for them to try to shop some of their first round picks for at least one of them this offseason.
Hopefully in Sweeney’s second year as GM the mess of a roster he inherited from Peter Chiarelli starts to come together a little bit better. Until then we can only continue to get angry at the moves, or lack thereof, the team makes.