Boston Bruins: Adam McQuaid’s New Contract.

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There were a lot of things that bothered the Boston Bruins fan base this weekend. Some were angered about not signing Carl Soderberg. Others were incensed with the B’s choices in first round draft picks. Nearly every fan was incensed by the departures of Dougie Hamilton/Milan Lucic. In the middle of all this, there was another Bruins move that had a lot of fans scratching their collective heads.

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  • That was the Boston Bruins signing of defenseman Adam McQuaid. McQuaid was making $1.4 million/yr. While the Bruins loved his style of play, McQuaid was often battling injuries as often as he was battling other NHL players. In the last three seasons, the 28-year old defenseman has only been able to play in  125 games(Out of 212).  During those three years, McQuaid has only put up seventeen points (3 goals). In his entire Boston career , he averages about 1.5 goals/season.

    The Boston Bruins announced that they had signed McQuaid to a four-year/$11 million dollar contact that had a $2.75 million cap hit. While this was a good day for ‘Darth Quaider’, it had a lot of fans bewildered. With all the deals and missteps made this weekend, you could actually hear the arteries clamping shut all around Causeway Street.

    McQuaid is a bottom pair defenseman who brings a lot of heart, but very little offensive production. Common sense would tell us that his contract value would have diminished. There was serious talk that McQuaid would not be part of the team in October. Kevan Miller brought the snarl of McQuaid. He also brought better production, and slightly better skates for half the price of McQuaid.

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    That’s when things went a little screwy for Boston. The B’s lost Dougie Hamilton, and the B’s blue line got younger and more questionable. The Bruins were going to need to sign some kind of veteran defenseman, and there were going to have to do it on a budget. So, why give McQuaid such a large raise?

    That’s the problem with the NHL. McQuaid’s perceived value among other NHL teams was considerably higher than what the average fan would think. He was a NHL-ready defenseman who offered size and snarl in a very weak free agency market. If there were just a few more defenseman available on the market, McQuaid’s value would have diminished by an order of magnitude.

    There was also the Peter Chiarelli factor. The Edmonton Oilers were shopping around for both Hamilton and McQuaid. The Bruins organization refused to deal with Chiarelli over Hamilton, and again there seemed to be a certain level of spite in the contract they offered McQuaid. The Oilers certainly wanted McQuaid, but they weren’t going to give him nearly three million a year.

    Hopefully, McQuaid has a couple of injury free seasons. Maybe he could put up a few more goals and soak up more minutes as he’ll probably see more second line time with the current state of the Bruins blue line. It would be nice to see something work out right for the B’s after a disappointing draft weekend.

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