Who Could Be The Next GM For The Boston Bruins?


The Boston Bruins organization chose to relieve Peter Chiarelli of his duties as the B’s general manager today.  Bruins President Cam Neely called a press conference later in the day to explain why the organization felt it was necessary to replace their GM.

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“We believe that we made the decision moving forward to help improve the hockey club,” said Neely to the media. “I don’t want to take away anything that Peter accomplished here; he’s going to go down in history as the GM that brought the Stanley Cup to Boston for the first time in thirty-nine years, so that says a lot about his abilities as a general manager.

“But we just felt — and it’s not just this particular year, not making the playoffs — we just felt, moving forward, it was the best thing for us to do. It was not an easy decision to come to — [we had] a lot of conversations about it — but we felt that it was the best thing to do moving forward.”

Neely stated that the B’s were going to immediately begin the search for a new GM. Until then, all the current hockey operations departments would be reporting to him.

“We’re going to take our time and go through the process and make sure we make a decision we feel is best for the organization,” Neely said. “Again, it’s really about what we feel is going to be best for the organization.”

“[It’s about] finding the best candidate. Period.” -Bruins CEO Charlie Jacobs

So, now the search is on for the eighth general manager of the Boston Bruins. The B’s now have two options, promoting from within or looking outside the company for a leader that can make the right (and a few tough) choices needed to right the ship, return the Bruins to the playoffs, and successfully navigate the waters of the B’s current cap problems.

The current consensus among the big-wigs in Boston media are that former Pens GM Ray Shero and current Bruins assistant GM Don Sweeney are the front-runners for the job. Either one of them could move the team in a new direction.

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  • Ray Shero could do the job. When he was brought on board to lead the Pittsburgh Penguins organization, his goal was to get the Pens a Stanley Cup. He achieved that in 2009. He was awarded General Manager of the Year in 2013. So, his pedigree is adequate for the task.

    There are also a few similarities with Chiarelli. Both of them were assistant GMs in Ottawa. Both of them tried to build success around a superstar. Shero and Chiarelli both made tweaks to the team that didn’t quite pan out for their organizations. Both of them doubled down on getting Jarome Iginla on their squads.

    While Shero could fix the Bruins problems, it could easily turn into a Chiarelli: Part Two in Boston.

    Don Sweeney does have a lot going for him. He’s a former teammate of Cam Neely.  Sweeney (who has 1,100+ games under his belt) has worked his way up through the Bruins organization . In 2006, Sweeney joined the Bruins front office as the director of player development. In 2007, he was promoted to director of hockey operations and player development. Three years later, he was promoted to assistant general manager. He’s also the general manager for the B’s AHL affiliate Providence Bruins.

    All this makes Sweeney the safer choice amongst the two. He already has the rapport with Neely. He’s been steadily promoted through the ranks, and has plenty of AGM and GM experience.

    The Bruins organization could easily go with one of these options, or surprise everyone with another.

    Jeff Gorton is another solid option for the Black and Gold. He was the interim GM in 2006 prior to Chiarelli getting the job. He was an assistant GM in Boston for seven seasons.  He’s been the number two guy for the New York Rangers for the past four seasons. Gorton was part of the team that brought Milan Lucic, Brad Marchand, Tuukka Rask,  and Zdeno Chara to Boston. He wouldn’t be a bad outside of the box choice for the organization.

    Neely is willing to take his time to find the right match in Boston.

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