Boston Bruins: Zach Senyshyn musn’t be used as trade bait

MONTREAL, QC - NOVEMBER 05: Zach Senyshyn #19 of the Boston Bruins skates against the Montreal Canadiens during the first period at the Bell Centre on November 5, 2019 in Montreal, Canada. The Montreal Canadiens defeated the Boston Bruins 5-4. (Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)
MONTREAL, QC - NOVEMBER 05: Zach Senyshyn #19 of the Boston Bruins skates against the Montreal Canadiens during the first period at the Bell Centre on November 5, 2019 in Montreal, Canada. The Montreal Canadiens defeated the Boston Bruins 5-4. (Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images) /
facebooktwitterreddit

The Boston Bruins look set to seek a deal or two this trade deadline. Whatever they do, they must avoid making Zach Senyshyn part of any trade.

Unfairly labelled as a bust, Zach Senyshyn is routinely mentioned by Boston Bruins fans in the same sentence as other guys that should’ve been taken with the 15th overall pick of the 2015 NHL Entry Draft.

We’ve all heard it; Matthew Barzal, Thomas Chabot and Brock Boeser all were picked later in that same first round and were on the table for the Boston Bruins to grab but instead they picked Zach Senyshyn, who thus far has seen just 6 NHL games.

By comparison, Thomas Chabot is playing 26:16 average ice-time for the Ottawa Senators this season, Brock Boeser already has two 50-point seasons and is closing in on a third and Matthew Barzal is already a two-time NHL All-Star selection.

More from Prospects

To compare Zach Senyshyn is unfair though; his development trajectory has followed a different path. He showed that he get get points in the American Hockey League the previous two seasons, with 26 points for the Providence Bruins in his first year and 24 last season.

This year though, his usage has been different. In his brief call-up to the Boston Bruins line-up this year, he looked decent until that was derailed by injury troubles. In four NHL games though, he did enough to earn 10 minutes ice-time on 2 occasions and tallied two assists.

The Boston Bruins head coach, Bruce Cassidy has been noticeably stingy with dishing out ice-time to the younger players in the line-up, with Anders Bjork and Karson Kuhlman only recently seeing themselves earn increased roles.

To grab even 10 minutes is a sign that the Boston Bruins have faith in Zach Senyshyn eventually being a part of their roster full-time. After all, Bjork was seeing time on both special teams prior to the break but ended up seeing just 8:51 against the Winnipeg Jets the other night.

He has been working hard to develop his game beyond being a typical one-dimensional winger that scores a few points here and there. The biggest growth has been an increased willingness to play a defensive game when required; his two-way game has come on in leaps and bounds with Providence.

Yes, he doesn’t have the higher ceiling guys drafted after him do; Barzal, Boeser, Chabot, Sebastian Aho and Kyle Connor are all very much NHL regulars and he’s barely rated a sniff at the big league.

That doesn’t mean he can’t become a serviceable piece of the puzzle. Even if he caps out at fourth line minutes, if he can play a strong two-way game, he’s an asset.

It’s hard not to blame Zach Senyshyn for being drafted in the spot he was, but end of the day, that was all on the Boston Bruins management. He has no say in it and thus to tarnish him because of it is a little unfair.

To allow Zach to be traded is to allow a player with real potential to be a strong two-way third line winger go. Depending on the deal, you might allow it, but it also feels like the sort of decision that bites when the inevitable cap crunch spins round each year.

Next. The goaltenders that'll decide the Atlantic Division. dark

Even keeping him in town as a potential piece for the new Seattle team to take seems like a wiser option than dealing him now. Right now, we wouldn’t be getting true value for him and there is definitely potential there – he’s still just 22 after all.