The Boston Bruins didn’t earn themselves many fans during the 2015 NHL Draft. Many in Boston are questioning the team’s trades and draft selections, as it now appears the team is headed for a partial rebuild.
The Bruins traded away arguably some of their best talent. Gone from Boston are Dougie Hamilton, Milan Lucic, and Carl Soderberg. And while the team received a plethora of picks in their place, they failed to really capitalize on those selections.
Boston had the 13th, 14th, and 15th picks of the 2015 NHL Draft, and the team drafted off the board on all three. The Bruins selected Jakob Zboril, Jake DeBrusk, and Zachary Senyshyn. The trio could have been had at a much later point in the first round. Boston clearly stuck to their board and did not select best available, as Travis Konecny, Matthew Barzal, Colin White, Kyle Connor were all still waiting to be selected.
It wasn’t necessarily who the Bruins drafted that has many Boston faithful up in arms, but rather what they gave up to acquire those picks. Dougie Hamilton might be the biggest head scratcher, as he was traded to Calgary for a 2015 1st and two second round selections. The deal might seem good on paper, but Hamilton is a potential game-changing defenseman.
Many say he is capable of producing 50+ points on a consistent basis.
Boston traded Hamilton because they didn’t want to sign the restricted free agent to the deal he was seeking, which was believed to be in the $6 million range. Many will say that it’s better the team trade Hamilton and get a package back, rather than let him walk and receive nothing. Although, the Bruins are now left without a top pairing defenseman.
Zdeno Chara is looking quite long in the tooth, and Torey Krug isn’t the quite offensive juggernaut of Hamilton. While the decision to trade Hamilton has been an unpopular one in Boston, the decision to deal Lucic has generated just as much negative response, as he has been an integral part of the Bruins franchise since the 2007 season.
Once a 61-point scorer, Lucic was traded to the Los Angeles Kings for a 1st round selection and young goalie Martin Jones. Although, unlike the Hamilton trade, Boston might have had a legitimate reason to trade Lucic. The 27-year-old will be a free agent at the end of the 2016 season, and Boston was looking to give second-year winger, David Pastrnak, more time on the team’s top two lines.
The trade of Lucic might be an addition by subtraction move, and the Bruins were able to acquire assets in the process. However, the team took a serious step backwards in its trade of Dougie Hamilton.
Boston will have to wait and see if their 2015 Draft Picks pan out to consider these trades a success, but as of right now things are looking bleak for the once proud franchise.
However, Bruins fans can take solace in one thing, they still have former Vezina-winning goalie Tukka Rask…..for now.