Boston Bruins Rumors: Who replaces Niklas Svedberg?


Yesterday, Boston Bruins backup goaltender Niklas Svedberg signed a one year deal to play in Russia’s KHL. This will leave the Black and Gold without a number two, and not much for resources to acquire one. Most of the available goaltenders who will hit UFA status will cost at least a million dollars (or more), and the salary cap (expected to be at $71 million US) still hasn’t stabilized yet.

The Bruins will have no choice but to look within the organization to replace Svedberg. Essentially, it’s a three man race to earn the number two spot in the crease for Boston.

Candidate # 1 – Malcolm Subban. There’s more to this young netminder than being the younger brother of the Bruins’ (shy of Matt Cooke) most loathed enemy, Montreal defenseman P.K. Subban. He played thirty-five games for Providence last year, and his numbers were decent. He went 16-13-4(three shutouts). He put up a .921 save percentage, and an adequate 2.44 goals against. He’s got talent, and has a shot at getting bumped up to the ‘B’ for the 2015-16 season.

Subban probably needs another season in Providence before he moves up to the big club.  The Bruins want him to be the goalie of the future, and that makes him the number one contender at the moment. Of the three candidates, he’s the only one of them with any NHL experience (although a 5.61 goals against and a .500 save percentage is certainly nothing to hang your hat on).

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  • Candidate #2 – Jeremy Smith. Smith was brought on as the number two goaltender for Providence when Svedberg got promoted to Boston.  While his numbers weren’t that impressive when the Bruins signed him, he had a very solid year in Providence. The twenty-five year old was even able to wrestle the number one goaltender position away from Subban at one point.

    Smith played in thirty-nine games for Providence.  He went 22-11-5. His save percentage was a solid .933, and his goals against average was an impressive 2.05. Smith has more hockey experience under his belt. If the B’s can sign him again for another one-year, two-way contract, they could solve one of their problems at a cap friendly cost.

    It’s all but assured that Smith and Subban will both be invited to Boston for training camp, and the new GM will make the best possible choice for the franchise.

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    While the final candidate is a long-shot to make the number two team, he’s one of the best goaltenders in North America who isn’t currently playing in the NHL or the AHL.

    Candidate #3 –  Zane McIntyre. McIntyre helped lead his team to the Frozen Four this year while playing for the university of North Dakota. He  won the Mike Richter Award for being the best goalie in college hockey and was a finalist for the Hobey Baker.

    He an exciting young player to watch, and has great instincts for the net and excellent puck handling skills. He played in forty-two games last season and went 29-9-3. He earned a .931 save percentage and an even two goals against average.

    McIntyre has to be put in contention because he could become the Dougie Hamilton of goaltenders for Boston.   He plays with size of Tuukka Rask and the controlled chaos of Tim Thomas.  That’s something the Bruins could certainly use more of (and it would be a shame to see him get the job only to play fifteen to twenty games). He still has one year to go before he graduates, and the chance to win a national title may entice him to stick around for one more year.

    It’s entirely possible the Bruins would extend him an invitation to him as well in September.

    Any one of these three players could fit the bill for Boston come opening night in October. The Bruins organization will just need to find the right match for their team moving forward.

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