The NHL's 3:00 PM Eastern trade deadline has come and gone and the Bruins were not able to improve up front. GM Peter Chiarelli made a pair of deals this morning that freed up some cap space and brought defenseman Dennis Seidenberg to The Hub. First, the Bruins shipped Derek Morris back to Phoenix for a 4th round pick (3rd rounder if Morris re-signs with Phoenix), which set up the trade with Florida (Byron Bitz, Craig Weller, and Tampa Bay's 2010 2nd round pick for Dennis Seidenberg and Ohio State defenseman Matthew Bartkowski).
Essentially swapping Morris for Seidenberg is pretty much a marginal improvement on the blueline, but it gives the Bruins cap space since Morris made $3.3 million and Seidenberg makes $2.25 million...cap space that I thought would be used to bring in a forward . Seidenberg will give you about the same numbers as Morris, but at a lower cost. Seidenberg is strong positionally and isn't afraid to block shots. He is also a guy that can make the first pass out of the zone, which is something the Bruins desperately needed.
For a team that is last in the league in goal scoring that is still in the playoff hunt not to land a goal scorer is inexcusable. Peter Chiarelli and the Bruins brass sent a clear message: this is not "the year to B here". A Cup run this year was a bit of a pipe dream but I figured the B's would still want to win a playoff series to line Jacobs' pocket with an extra couple games' worth of concession sales. Peter Chiarelli tried to spin it like they were trying to improve for this year, but it is clear that this deadline was all about the future, not the present.
I'll admit that the market for goal scorers was limited this year and I am glad that they didn't overpay or sell the future for a rental player, but I think they could have brought in a player who could help this team offensively. Chasing after Kovalchuk made no sense this year, but they had to have other options to improve up front.
Essentially this is what the Bruins did at the deadline:
Leaving Town: Byron Bitz, Craig Weller, Matt Marquardt, and a 2010 2nd round pick
Coming to Boston...eventually...maybe: Dennis Seidenberg, Matthew Bartkowski, Cody Wild, Steve Kampfer, two conditional 4th round picks.
My two goals for the Bruins at the deadline were to get a puck-moving defenseman and to get some scoring up front. They achieved one of those goals by bringing in Dennis Seidenberg, but failed to improve offensively, which has been the Bruins biggest area of concern all season.
FINAL GRADE: INCOMPLETE
Actual Footage of Peter Chiarelli's Press Conference: