When Bruins defenseman Dennis Seidenberg went down with a torn ACL/MCL in his right knee on December 27, everybody knew they were in trouble. They just did not know how much trouble they would be in.
So far Seidenberg has been out for five games, and the Bruins have lost three of those five games. In that same time, the Bruins have allowed a surprising seven power play goals in 17 opportunities. Although Tuukka Rask has not been playing at his usual level, there is room for improvement for the defensmen.
Rask has allowed 15 goals in four games since Seidenberg’s injury. In the other game since Seidenberg’s injury, Niklas Svedberg allowed two goals against the Predators. Rask will need to step up his game to help cover for the loss of Seidenberg.
Due to the injury, the Bruins are relying on their other defensemen to step up. Some are up for the task and others are not. Zdeno Chara has been his usual self by playing many minutes, being solid defensively, and continuing to be a great net front presence on the power play.
Both Dougie Hamilton and Johnny Boychuk have seen an increase in minutes and they continue to be solid defensively, and they even have added a couple goals. These two will need to play key roles if the Bruins hope to make a deep playoff run this season.
Two defensmen that have been struggling with the loss of Seidenberg are Adam McQuaid and Torey Krug. In Tuesday’s game against Anaheim, McQuaid was on the ice for all three power play goals scored by the Ducks. For most of the season Krug and McQuaid have been struggling on defense, but now it is showed even more after the loss of Seidenberg. Although Krug has been playing great offensively, he has been struggling defensively. Krug and McQuaid need to step up and play better defensively if the Bruins want a chance of winning the Stanley Cup.
The Bruins will really feel Seidenberg’s loss when it is playoff time. For years Seidenberg and Chara have been arguably the best shut down defenseman pair in the NHL. Without Seidenberg, Chara and the other defensemen will have to step up and fill Seidenberg’s role.