Boston Bruins: A Cheap Veteran Blue Line Free Agent Option

Mar 4, 2020; Denver, Colorado, USA; Anaheim Ducks defenseman Michael Del Zotto (44) in the second period against the Colorado Avalanche at the Pepsi Center. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 4, 2020; Denver, Colorado, USA; Anaheim Ducks defenseman Michael Del Zotto (44) in the second period against the Colorado Avalanche at the Pepsi Center. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports /
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Veteran free-agent defensemen Micahel Del Zotto could be a cheap option for the Bruins.

There have been reports that a number of teams are kicking the tires on bringing Boston Bruins captain and current unrestricted free agent defensemen Zdeno Chara to their team for the 2020-21 season.

If Chara decides to play a 23rd season in another city other than Boston, the Bruins blue line will look a lot different when they gather at Warrior Ice Arena for training camp at some point soon hopefully. Missing both Torey Krug who left to join the St. Louis Blues in free agency in October and Chara will be two huge voids.

The Bruins have some young defensive prospects that are almost NHL ready and could begin the season in Boston. Urho Vaakanainen and Jakub Zboril are two names that will be top-six blueliners in the not too distant future.

With the Bruins trending on getting younger on defense, should Chara not return for a 15th season with the Black and Gold, could general manager Don Sweeney look for a veteran defenseman in free agency or through a trade?

Of course he can, but there are some defensemen still looking for work through free agency and one name that Sweeney and the front office could kick the tires on is Michael Del Zotto.

Last season, the 11-year veteran played for the Anaheim Ducks for $750,000, which would be a steal for Sweeney and the Bruins. In 49 games for the Ducks, he had two goals and 13 assists for a team that finished sixth in the Pacific Division with 67 points.

A left-handed shot, Del Zotto averaged 18:43 a night of ice-time last season and finished with a plus-5. A 2008 first-round pick of the New York Rangers, he has played for six different teams in his career, The 30-year old is a stay at home defender that would not put big offensive numbers, but be a steady blue line presence.

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If Sweeney and the Bruins are left without Chara for the 2020-21 season, Del Zotto could be had for cheap like he was for the Ducks last season and be a veteran bottom pair defensemen for coach Bruce Cassidy.