(Source: NESN.com – Nicholas Goss) – Veteran defenseman Kevan Miller signed a four-year, $10 million contract extension, the team announced in a press release. WEEI’s DJ Bean was the first to report the news. Miller, who would’ve been an unrestricted free agent if unsigned by July 1, tallied 18 points (five goals, 13 assists) in 71 games for Boston last season. He also played a main role on Boston’s penalty kill. The 28-year-old missed time over the past two seasons due to injury, most notably a right shoulder ailment that needed surgery and forced him to miss 41 games in 2014-15.
Well, I’m pretty much done trying to understand what general manager Don Sweeney and team president Cam Neely are trying to do in the front office because this Kevan Miller deal is as horrible a signing as ever by the executive brain trust on Causeway.
This is not a personal attack on Kevan Miller. He’s a good dude. He’s an incredibly strong dude. And is his rookie campaign he surprisingly impressed us all. But after a disastrous first half of the season last year followed up with an improved second half he’s pretty much proven he is a 6th defenseman. Some nights he’s a seventh. And that’s completely fine.
But giving a 6/7 d-man $2.5 million per season guaranteed for the next four seasons is a borderline fireable offense by Don Sweeney. Especially well before he needed to be signed, if he even needed to be.
It’s poor management, it’s poor use of funds, it’s incompetent. Can’t blame Kevan Miller and his agent for signing the dotted line fast enough. And if Kevan Miller, who would have been a free agent on July 1st, could have gotten that much money on the open market then why not let him go test that market? Or why not deal him at the trade deadline back in the spring if he’d be valued that much by other teams? No 28-year-old 6th defenseman on the planet should get the absurd security of a four year deal like that.
So what does this mean for guys like Colin Miller, Joe Morrow (both RFA’s), and Zach Trotman (UFA)? Who knows now. Is Torey Krug (RFA) now going to get $6 million per because of this deal?
Adam McQuaid ($2.75 million per year) plays a very similar game as Miller, and has a slightly bloated contract as well. Does he get traded? I’d rather have McQuaid in the lineup over Miller. Does Dennis Seidenberg ($4 million per year) get bought out? He better. Or he better waive his no-trade clause and hit the road. Because as of today the Bruins have nearly $10 million in salary cap locked up in 4, 5, and 6 d-men going into the 2016-2017 season. Surely another comparable defenseman could have been found this summer for Miller’s previous $850,000 salary on a much shorter term.
Oh yeah, I almost forgot, they still don’t have a #1 (or #2) defenseman on their roster either.
When Peter Chiarelli got canned last year I thought this shit was going to stop. I thought the Bruins had learned their lesson about overpaying and overextending depth players that didn’t need the Brinks truck treatment. Before it was the Chris Kelly and Greg Campbell (post Cup run) deals that ate up the money that would have kept Johnny Boychuk a Bruin. Now the Bruins have a bottom d-pairing whose combined cap hit nearly equals that of Tyler Seguin. These type of unnecessary signings can cripple franchises like the Bruins who are trying to get back on track.
This is just stupid.