We’re continuing our season preview, this time moving to the Boston Bruins with the help of our friend Cornelius Hardenbergh from Stanley Cup of Chowd(ah/er). Despite being supposed divisional rivals, the Bruins aren’t easy to hate these days for Senators fans. This could be for any number of reasons: they no longer employ Milan Lucic; Brad Marchand has started focusing more on playing hockey than faking injury; they’ve employed former Sens including Zdeno Chara, Chris Kelly, Wade Redden, and Kaspars Daugavins; the teams have never met in the playoffs; they make Habs fans angry; and, the Sens just beat them out to make the playoffs a year ago. Anyway. You can read the past previews here, and here are SCoC’s answers:
1. Which offseason was worse for Don Sweeney, 2015 or 2016? Have his trades or his signings hurt the team more?
It's tough to judge the 2016 offseason right now. There are still a few holes to fill, but there are still options out there. Last year's team had a few glaring holes (defensemen, mostly) but the forward group was as good as any in the league. (F'real!) They had a Leafs-quality backup goalie, and that didn't help either.
The 2015 offseason was pretty shocking. The Lucic trade was good, the Dougie trade was less-than-good. Neither was expected. The draft weekend was a big...well, we'll see if Zach Senyshyn ends up better than Barzal. Oh boy. They didn't sign any cheap FA defensemen, and it showed. A lack of good defensemen sunk the season.
The 2016 offseason could be good. Maybe we'll get Vesey! Maybe the plug we got in the first round will be the next Chris Kelly! At least we don't have to watch Kevan Miller drag Dennis Seidenberg around anymore. The Torey Krug deal was pretty solid, though!
Basically, I don't know. But I'm growing numb as a self-protective measure.
2. Do you like the Dennis Seidenberg buyout? How effective do you think Zdeno Chara will be over the last couple years of his buyout?
I love the Dennis Seidenberg buyout. Re-signing him 2 years ago is what lost us Johnny goddamn Boychuk and that was basically a "goodbye and screw you" from Peter Chiarelli. I hated the signing much more than I like the buyout, and I love the buyout. Sigh.
3. How high are the Bs on Malcolm Subban? Do you think either he or Tuukka Rask gets traded to avoid losing one of them for nothing in the expansion draft?
lol, who would trade Tuukka, really, honestly. Maybe Malcolm gets traded? Maybe not. He's had one or two pretty crappy chances in the NHL and didn't impress. So, we'll see about that. Depends on who their backup would be.
I have little faith in Sweeney to improve the defense all that much, and elite forwards and primary goalies can be dragged down by a wet tissue defense and backup goalie. I assume we just barely make the playoffs due to a lot of luck.