Adam McQuaid Injury May Determine Bruins’ Trading for a Defenseman


Dec 31, 2013; Boston, MA, USA; Boston Bruins defenseman Adam McQuaid (54) handles the puck at the blue line during the first period against the New York Islanders at TD Banknorth Garden. Mandatory Credit: Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

McQuaid’s Injury, Chiarelli’s Opinion on Trade

In the presence of Dennis Seidenberg‘s season-ending ACL injury, Adam McQuaid is one of the Boston Bruins‘ more experienced defensemen accessible for ice time in the playoffs.

However, McQuaid has been dealing with a nagging leg injury which has been very unpredictable as of late. In fact, according to Dan Rosen of NHL.comClaude Julien specified that he wasn’t %100 sure how far the 27-year-old had progressed in his recovery. He let the media know that McQuaid is coping with a strange impairment.

"“I think the doctor at one point might be able to explain it more if we get to that stage, but right now it’s in that groin/hip area where it’s not something you see very often,” Julien said. “It heals, it gets hurt again, heals — so that’s why we’ve given him a little bit more time to heal this time, but we’re not sure he needs more time or whether he’s good to go. We’re looking at that.”"

McQuaid’s been out of gameplay with this ailment since the middle of January, while the Bruins, of course, find themselves in the midst of NHL trade discussions, particularly for defensemen.

Yesterday, Causeway Crowd’s own Joe Kelly delved into several trade likelihoods for the B’s. It makes sense that all of these players fall on the defensive side given the Bruins’ recent stumblings against the Washington Capitals and Buffalo Sabres.

Do the Bruins actually want to acquire a defenseman with the type of mediocre talent on the market right now? I don’t think the B’s are searching for a Seidenberg replacement, but Peter Chiarelli wants a wise veteran player to deter the youngsters’ miscues. The availability of excellent UFAs, though, is noticeably slim right now.

Several days ago, a 98.5 The Sports Hub interview with Chiarelli divulged his thoughts on the whole situation.

"“A seller’s market would suggest short supply, and I guess that’s the case. There’s a lot of teams in the mix. A lot of teams are at the cap that are contending that don’t want to give up players on their team but would have to in order to get a player. So there are a lot of forces that are really pushing against the market opening up.”"

Everything Chiarelli explained is completely true. From a business standpoint, a supply-demand issue currently exists in the market as teams approach the NHL trade deadline, so in present terms, the Bruins’ GM would probably not waste the energy to aggressively pursue a utility man.

This McQuaid situation, though, may change Chiarelli’s perspective on his team’s needs. The former Providence Bruins star blossomed into a respectable defender for the Bruins albeit his noticeable time sitting on the bench. He’s only performed in 32 games for the B’s this year, but he boasts a strong 6’4” body that often engages forwards with a fairly physical brand of hockey.

Granted, McQuaid isn’t a breakout skater that will ultimately propel the Bruins to Stanley Cup favorite status. No,  McQuaid is that fundamentally sound defender with a long reach and workable offensive game. Sometimes, he’ll exceed expectations and help the B’s jump into the Stanley Cup Finals. Other times, he just your average blueliner.

The key for the Chiarelli, in the end, revolves around trading for depth because a game-breaking D-man really isn’t an option at this point. After all, McQuaid’s a depth guy, and his unavailability may be the only reason for boosting Chiarelli’s deadline efforts.