As the NHL off season lingers on most Bruins fans are waiting for the next shoe to drop in Don Sweeney’s plan. The plan needing attention is the Bruins still need at least one top 4 defenseman, yet I would argue they maybe have too many defensemen already.
Currently the Bruins have 9 defensemen that have a shot at this year’s lineup. The first guy on the list is the captain Zdeno Chara. I do not feel Chara is a number one anymore. He has broken down the past three years and has really slowed, so it is a good thing he has the reach of a country mile. He has also been painful to watch on the power play, but as of now he is the Bruins top defenseman.
Next you have Dennis Seidenberg. He could be considered a top 4 defenseman but last season he was slow in his recovery from a torn ACL. If he rebounds this year back into the top 4 defenseman he was it will be great for the Bruins, especially at a friendly cap hit of a little over $4 million.
Next up, Torey Krug. He is a power play specialist but is often protected by coach Claude Julian in the defensive zone. He is not a top 4, but he might get top 4 minutes if no trades are made to bolster the d-corp.
For right hand shots I will start with Zach Trotman. Trotman is a guy that can move the puck and be a beast, but he is still a work in progress in his own end.
Probably the biggest beast of them all is Adam McQuaid. The rugged stay at home defenseman will definitely be in the Bruins top 6 after signing his new four-year contract extension.
That leaves us with Kevan Miller. He suffered through a shoulder injury last year that eventually ended his season. Two years ago, when he officially arrived in the 2013 -2014 season, I thought Kevan Miller was one of the best Bruins defenders on the roster.
The Bruins also signed Matt Irwin recently, a free agent from the San Jose Sharks. He is a left hand shot that has some offensive upside. He could be one of the most underrated signings of the off-season.
Other players that will push for a job in training camp are Joe Morrow, acquired in the Seguin trade, who is a puck moving defenseman, and Colin Miller, who was acquired in the Lucic trade.
With all this being said it leads me to believe they still need a right-handed shot defenseman to play with Zdeno Chara. Plus, rumors at the trade deadline and this off season had the Bruins trying to move Dennis Seidenberg, which I think could still be a possibility if they are bringing in another top 4 defenseman. But once camp starts in September there will be plenty of competition amongst the defenseman for key roster spots.
As we saw in the playoffs this year, teams that go far ride their top pairing, which right now the Bruins do not have.