Is Zdeno Chara’s Championship Window Closing?
The Bruins’ “win now window” is a hot topic in the hub, and I myself think it is a myth. It is propaganda shoved in our faces by the many “hot take” media guys that cover the B’s. It is everywhere you look, it is on the radio, it is on the TV, and it is utterly insufferable.
How does this move help them “win now”? What is Peter Chiarelli doing? Seriously, if I hear somebody ask either of those questions again I am going to climb to the rafters in the TD Garden between Orr and Clapper and take the plunge onto the spoked B.
The Bruins’ window is generally considered to be based on captain Zdeno Chara’s age, level of play, and inevitable decline. There are a number of reasons why this is both ridiculous and completely devoid of facts. For starters; Chara isn’t even the best player on this team anymore. He is their best defenseman for sure, but he isn’t the elite workhorse he once was. Having said that, Z at age 37 is still a better defenseman than about 90% of every other defenseman in the NHL right now.
“But Matt, he has gotten slow and it showed against Montreal last year, and Chicago the year before”. That is a fair point, but don’t you think it is a little irresponsible on the coach’s end to play a 37 year old play for 25+ minutes a night, even though he is a freak athlete? It is really easy to blame the player, but then again I would love to see anybody who calls him slow lace up skates and face the best players on the opposing team every night.
The Bruins plan for last season was to limit his minutes. Dennis Seidenberg tore his ACL and screwed that one up royally (not his fault obviously). So the team was forced to overuse their big man and he was unfortunately exposed. If Seides hadn’t gotten hurt, would that of happened? Who knows, and there isn’t any use in speculating. Hopefully it won’t come to that next season either.
You also can’t avoid the hypocrisy regarding Chara and the “window” too. Most people in Boston consider Big Z ineffective and slow right? If you were to type his name into twitter right now you would see a ton of “trade Chara” people. What I don’t understand is that if people feel as if Zdeno is too old and slow, than why is this “win now window” attitude based on him and the remaining years in his career?
Break Out The Bruins Offseason Mailbag!
Hello everyone, the 2014 NHL Entry Draft is this Friday and it’s time for the Bruins to start planning for the upcoming season. We took this opportunity to answer some of your questions about the upcoming season.
Craig Wagaman: would love a list of who our UFAs and RFAs are (or a link to one)… thanks….:
Sure thing Craig, one site I always use is Capgeek.com. It is perfect for getting an idea of the B’s current cap situation, potential free agents, and bonus repercussions. It also has a cool feature called “Armchair GM” where you can acquire, sign, and trade any player and look at how the cap would work.
Ralph Roche: why did they get rid of Shawn Thornton?
It was tough to see Thornton go, but he did have to go, and it was pretty clear last season with the B’s was his last. He is going to be 38 years old going into next season and he has slowed down noticeably. The Bruins as a team are looking to get faster too. He will always be appreciated for his tenacity and presence on and off the ice, but the Bruins have a wealth of young NHL forwards that are ready to contribute.
Michael J. Ardolino: Do you think Chris Kelly, Gregory Campbell and Adam McQuaid are on the outs?
Difficult to say, the Bruins are pressed for cap at the time, but they have also come out and said that they will not be using any of their compliance buyouts. I would try and move Soup and Quaider because they would collectively open up $3.2 million in cap space. With this you could put Kelly down on the fourth line. You could also attempt to trade Kelly, but he is coming off of an injury, is a little overpaid, and has a no trade clause. The B’s are in a tough spot with the cap, and I am just as curious as you to see how they handle it.
I have been defending Milan Lucic for his actions during “Handshake Gate” at the conclusion of the Bruins-Habs second round series. Lucic is a fierce competitor and how can anyone expect him to turn off the HATE The Habs faucet so quickly after a disappointing and disheartening post-season defeat.
Is he supposed share a Danish with Dale Weise or take a long walk on the beach with Alexei Emelin?
They poked the bear and heard his growl.
The same “I’m going to f*cking kill you” growl that has inspired this shirt that has sold over 1,000 units in less than a week.
So to no one outside of Montreal’s surprise, it looks like the Habs actually stirred the pot in the handshake line setting Lucic off into his “unsportsmanlike” and threatening tirade”.
Bruins winger Milan Lucic is still not sorry for what he said to the Habs’ Dale Weise & Alexei Emelin in the handshake line after Game 7.
And Ryan Austin of Dirty Water Tees is not sorry for taking the interwebs by storm with his “Good Game, I’m Going To F*cking Kill You” shirts.
Just days since those now infamous/famous words were uttered by Lucic, over 900 shirts have been sold and some even to Habs fans.
‘Merica….you can make an ass load of money for being quick on your feet and not being sorry for it.
Join the handshake line today by getting your shirt from Dirty Water Tees!
Dear Habs players &
fans yahoos (“yahoos” are fans that believe vehemently that their team can do NO wrong. I know Habs fans and we are are actually friends because we have mutual respect for each other.),
I want to start this letter by congratulating you as much as it pains me being a Boston Bruins fan of over 30 years.
You beat us.
You outplayed us.
You wanted it more than us.
You were the BETTER team.
No excuses, No BS.
Not going to blame the refs or the posts or the crossbars.
You converted on our mistakes and we made plenty of the them.
But there are some other things you did much better than us.
You were defiant to admit that your sh*t stinks too.
I’m not really thrilled to be writing this article. It seems too early and it’s hard to believe this once promising Boston Bruins’ season is over. I am not going to break down the Habs series in tremendous detail, but I am going to take a look at some positives and some negatives from the playoffs, and some of the regular season.
Matt Bartkowski needs to go: I normally never single out just one player (there are some that will get their’s too), but Matt Bartkowski was absolutely brutal throughout the entire series against Montreal. There is no way this guy is a member of the B’s next season. Whether it be the bonehead plays, brutal penalties, and the awful positioning; it’s safe to say he won’t be back.
Brad Marchand probably needs to go too: Remember when everyone used to love Brad Marchand’s antics? Do you also remember that time Brad Marchand was an effective weapon in the playoffs? Good, because that was 3 years ago. I do like Marchand, but I think it has gotten to the point where his shtick is hurting the Bruins’ more than it is benefitting them. The refs are on to him and he is being called for penalties more than he is goading opposing players in to taking them. I am starting to think his time is up.
Players replacing players: I am a big fan of Chris Kelly and Adam McQuaid, but I believe there are two players who have played them out of Boston. Carl Soderberg has completely emerged as a legitimate scoring threat on the third line. Moving him to center was a big time to move that helped him elevate his game to new heights. In the same regard; I believe Kevan Miller has totally played Adam McQuaid out of town. I don’t think Miler is a better player, but he makes nearly half of McQuaid’s annual salary. Soderberg also makes less than Kelly. If this team hope to re-sign all of its free agents with ease, they will need to free up some space.
Dougie Hamilton and Torey Krug are the real deal: If you can take on positive out of the Bruins’ doomed Stanley Cup run this season; it should be the fact that Dougie Hamilton and Torey Krug were arguably the best two players for the team. Krug led the team with 2 goals and 8 assists in all 12 of the team’s playoff games, and Hamilton played legitimate top pairing minutes while contributing offensively with 2 goals and 5 assists. A lot of people talk about the “window” with this team referring to when Zdeno Chara will retire, but I believe the window can be extended as Hamilton develops into a star in the NHL.