NHL Trade Deadline: Boston Bruins Should Inquire About Ryan Murphy For a Variety of Reasons
The Boston Bruins have remained quiet during a busy 2017 NHL trade deadline period. While they may not have plans to make a move for any rentals, they could still explore options for players with term. One such player could be Carolina Hurricanes defenseman, Ryan Murphy. As Craig Custance of ESPN mentioned Tuesday, the 23-year-old defenseman has been the subject of trade calls in Carolina recently.
The Bruins should take a look at Murphy given his impressive career in the OHL that has been followed up with very good numbers in the AHL and decent numbers in the NHL.
A Review of Murphy’s Career
While playing with the Kitchener Rangers of the OHL, Murphy was a star. In 228 games with the Rangers, Murphy scored 53 goals and 220 points. His best season came in 2010-11, his draft year, when he scored a career-high 26 goals, 53 assists, 79 points and played in a career-high 63 games. His playoff totals were just as impressive. He played in a career 53 postseason games in the OHL, scoring 12 goals and 57 points.
When making the jump to the AHL, Murphy showed no signs of slowing down. Following the conclusion of his season in Kitchener in 2013, Murphy played in four NHL games and three games with the Charlotte Checker. He’s played in a career 89 AHL games, scoring 10 goal and 66 points. His uncanny ability to set up his teammates has stood out, and it’s earned him various stints with Carolina
Murphy has played in 137 NHL games over the last five seasons, scoring six goals and 37 points. He’s been given bottom-pairing minutes in those games, playing on a rebuilding Hurricanes team throughout. If given the chance to flourish on a team with more offensive firepower, Murphy could live up to his 12th overall draft status from the 2011 NHL Entry Draft.
More Than Meets the Eye
When looking at Murphy’s underlying numbers, it’s clear that he’s worth a look. As his HERO chart will display, his ability is representative more of a top-four defender than a bottom-pairing player. While HERO charts don’t tell the full story, it’s a good starting point to judge a player’s potential. Murphy possesses all the makings of a premier offensive defenseman. He has a high hockey-IQ, as well as good vision and a good shot. His defensive ability leaves a lot to be desired, but in an NHL where offensive defensemen are becoming a premium, he’s worth a look.
Murphy’s cap hit is also a very good reason for the Bruins to inquire. If they take a chance on him, he’d only come with a $787,500 cap hit through the 2017-18 season. With the upcoming NHL Expansion Draft sitting in the back of every NHL general managers’ mind, Murphy could give the Bruins some flexibility. There’s no way the Bruins can protect all of their current NHL defensemen. They can, however, prepare for the potential loss of one, by acquiring a 23-year-old if the price is right.