It is now been five quiet days since the Bruins trade deadline. The fact that barely any talk about our new acquisitions has been flooding the streets of Boston shows how little we actually did. The Bruins 34-23-6 record before the trade deadline put them at 3rd in the Atlantic Division and 5th in the Eastern Conference. There was a major need for a defensive overhaul and Loui Eriksson was the answer to solving this necessity.
However, at 3:01 pm. on February 29th, a minute after the trade deadline he was still here. Instead, our anticipated “major” trade deadline move was a marginal attempt at best. Instead of shipping Loui out of Boston for possible draft picks and other considerations to be bundled to help our defensive needs, we received 35-year-old defenseman John Michael Liles from the Carolina Hurricanes and 33- year-old right-winger Lee Stempniak from the New Jersey Devils.
In the 64 games that Liles played for Carolina, this season he has 15 points to show for, 9 assists, with a plus / minus of -3. Stempniak, in 63 games for the Devils, has 41 points, 25 assists, and a plus / minus of 3. Despite Stempniak having one of the best statistical years of his long career; are these guys the answer for both the short term and the long term?
Exactly what need did the Bruins fill with obtaining a 35-year-old defenseman when our defense is in need of major changes for the long term to get us to our ultimate goal of winning the cup for years to come? Sure, maybe this will increase our chances of making the playoffs this year, but is that what is truly the concern? Trying to not miss the playoffs for a second straight year? Shouldn’t we be building a team for the long term with our major need of a defensive overhaul? I seriously doubt that the front office truly believes that the team needs Loui to help hoist Lord Stanley’s Cup. They just want us to not miss playoffs for a second year; and to be honest what good has Loui done for us when we play good teams? Not all that much.
I guess we will just have to wait until the front office learns that it’s okay to miss playoffs consecutive years in order to rebuild a team for years of success. For now we are going to have to accept that we just built a team that potentially can get us a couple of home playoff games this year. Who knows though maybe we can be proven wrong, but whatever this team becomes as a result of our deadline moves, is merely for short term gain.