Boston Bruins: Who gets traded (Defensemen Edition)?


Nov 24, 2014; Boston, MA, USA; Pittsburgh Penguins center

Sidney Crosby

(87) and Boston Bruins defenseman

Torey Krug

(47) battle for position during the second period at TD Garden. Mandatory Credit: Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports

The Boston Bruins have lost six of their last seven games, and they’re looking a lot less like the Boston Bruins we know, and a lot more like the Edmonton Oilers. The Bruins have had trouble scoring this season. While that is a large part of the problem, the Bruins have not been themselves on defense this year.

The Bruins have had serious holes in their blue line. They’ve had them since before opening night (when Peter Chiarelli traded Johnny Boychuk to the New York Islanders for magic beans, er I mean draft picks.) The organization had multiple opportunities to fix their problems, but as of yet been able to find a steady hand to round out the Bruins defensemen.

So, let’s take a look at the Bruins blueliners. See who has the potential for an early exit from Boston this season, or gets let go/moved after the season is over.

The Bruins have two blueliners under contract that have no-trade clauses. That’s Zdeno Chara and Dennis Seidenberg. Both players have come back from serious injuries, and both of them have not been their old selves since returning from injury. The Bruins could make a move with Seidenberg, but it’s unlikely. Frankly, no matter what your opinion is on the Bruins current captain, I doubt he’ll be going anywhere until the end of his contract or until he retires from the NHL.

The Bruins have two players under entry level contract. Joe Morrow and Dougie Hamilton. Morrow could be shipped off as a hangar on for any large scale contract trade that came the Bruins way. Morrow’s absence wouldn’t be keenly missed. Losing Dougie Hamilton could be (another) disaster for the Bruins this year. Hamilton’s contract next year will certainly be larger than expected, and the Bruins are still trapped in cap hell for overpaying (and in at least one case, seriously overpaying) some of the current roster. While I think it would be foolhardy to the point of insanity, Chiarelli has surprised us once already.

Adam McQuaid and Matt Bartkowski are UFAs at the end of the year. I will be surprised if McQuaid is still here next October. He’s been riding injuries for the last few seasons, and it’s unlikely the Bruins will shed cap space for him.  Which means we can expect to see Bartkowski playing out as the blue line version of the Jordan Caron experiment for Boston.  Bartkowski has flashes of brilliance for Boston, and is equally capable of disaster. We’ve seen both this year, so who knows what will happen next? (Well, Bartkowski could do us a favor and apply for arbitration again. That would probably sever the tie between him and Chiarelli.)

Torey Krug will likely be sticking around. He’s proven to be too useful and one of the blueliners that has been pretty dependable for the Black and Gold. That leaves Kevan Miller, who will be staying as a bottom pair defenseman/team pugilist. Zach Trotman may stay in Boston, but he’ll likely spend his time between the NHL and the AHL.

The Bruins are currently out of the playoff picture, and will likely make a big move in order to restore equilibrium.