Tag: Peter Chiarelli

Boston Bruins v New Jersey Devils

Cunningham could solve Bruins’ problems


We mentioned last week the salary cap crunch the Boston Bruins are currently under. Adding to general manager Peter Chiarelli’s problems is the fact both Torey Krug and Reilly Smith (both restricted free agents) are unsigned.

The Boston Globe suggested moving one of the Bruins pending unrestricted free agent defensemen in order to both clear cap room and potentially add a right winger – an area the Bruins are currently lacking since the departures of veterans Jarome Iginla and Shawn Thornton.

However, Bruins’ prospect Craig Cunningham has another idea.

Cunningham, the Bruins fourth-round selection at the 2010 NHL Draft, has his eyes set on the Bruins roster for the upcoming season.

“Once you play and get sent back down, it makes you that hungrier,” Cunningham told Steve Ewen of  The Province. “The life is night and day, pretty much. It’s the life that I want. Everything’s different.”

The 23-year-old made his NHL debut on Dec. 17, 2013 and also suited up for the Bruins April 13 – the only two games he has on his resume.

Cunningham has been a model of consistency at the AHL level with the Providence Bruins registering three straight seasons of 20-plus goals. This past season he led Providence in goals (25) and was third in points (47).

In July, Boston rewarded him with a new, one-year, two-way contract, which pays him $85, 000 at the AHL level and $600,000 at the NHL level.

Cunningham hasn’t really had an opportunity to prove himself at the NHL level and though he’s a right-shot, right-winger – what the Bruins could use, he’s hardly a guarantee to make the team.

Boston also has Jordan Caron, Justin Florek and Matt Fraser, who are all likely ahead of Cunningham in the pecking order.

“You need to go to camp in the best shape possible and see where you fit in and what role you can play,” said Cunningham. “It’s always nice to know that there’s an opportunity. It pushes you that much more throughout your summer.”

Cunningham will need to have an excellent showing during the preseason to get any sort of consideration for time in Boston.

Related: B’s strength coach once viewed Lucic as ‘stringbean’

Report: Bruins need to make a trade


As it stands today, the Boston Bruins have little room to work with when it comes to cap space heading into the 2014-15 season and that’s a problem considering restricted free agent defensmen Torey Krug and forward Reilly Smith are without contracts.

Krug nor Smith had any leverage this summer as they wait for contracts. The pair didn’t have arbitration rights and are not eligible to sign offer sheets from other teams.

The Boston Globe’s Fluto Shinzawa points out there will be cap relief when Marc Savard is placed on the long-term injured reserved list, but even without Savard on the books, there’s little room or flexibility for general manager Peter Chiarelli to add two contracts.

The logical spot for Chiarelli to deal from is the back end where the Bruins are deep.

As we pointed out earlier this month, defensemen Johnny Boychuk, Adam McQuaid and Matt Bartkowski are all unrestricted after 2014-15.

Shinzawa suggests Boychuk or Bartkowski would likely bring the biggest return for Chiarelli.

The Bruins do have significant room to play with come 2015-16, but it’s not likely all three aforementioned defensemen re-sign in Boston. Shinzawa points out the Bruins could use an experienced right-shot, right winger in return on a trade.

So Bruins fans, who do you deal if you’re in Chiarelli’s shoes?

Related: Report: Bruins’ Marc Savard to join Ottawa 67’s

Bruins assistant Geoff Ward resigns, takes job in German league

Geoff Ward, Claude Julien

Claude Julien is in the market for a new assistant coach.

Boston Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli announced Geoff Ward has resigned from his position with the team and has taken the head coaching job with the Mannheim Eagles of the Deutsche Eishockey Liga in Germany.

Ward has been an assistant coach with the Bruins since 2007 and was part of the Stanley Cup-winning team in 2011. He was responsible for working the power play in Boston and that’s been a bit of a problem there in the postseason.

Seeing him leave to take a job in Germany isn’t shocking as he’s been a head coach there before including with Iserlohn in 2006-07 before he took the Bruins job. He’s also coached in the OHL with Kitchener and Guelph and the AHL with the Hamilton Bulldogs.

There isn’t a shortage of capable people to help out behind the bench and Julien and Chiarelli will have plenty of time to find a replacement.

Bruins’ Seidenberg done for season with torn ACL/MCL

Dennis Seidenberg

The Bruins will have a huge hole to fill on their blue line for the rest of the season.

The team announced defenseman Dennis Seidenberg will miss the remainder of the season after suffering a torn ACL and MCL in his right knee during their win against Ottawa last night. Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli said it’ll take him 6-8 months to recover from the injury.

Seidenberg was hurt after getting his leg tangled up with Sens forward Cory Conacher. He left the game and did not return and, as we’ve found out today, for good reason.

In 34 games this season, Seidenberg had one goal and nine assists while averaging over 21 minutes per game. Losing him for the season after losing Andrew Ference over the summer in free agency to Edmonton makes the Bruins defense look very green.

The Bruins have three steady veterans in captain Zdeno Chara, Johnny Boychuk, and Adam McQuaid. More will be asked of all three of them as well as younger guys like Torey Krug and Matt Bartkowski. Those guys have played admirably this season, but none have been as steady as Seidenberg.

The Bruins recalled defenseman Zach Trotman on an emergency basis to fill Seidenberg’s spot in the meantime and sent goalie Niklas Svedberg back to Providence.

Bruins sign GM Chiarelli to four-year extension

Peter Chiarelli

There’s no point in fixing something that’s not broken and that’s just what the Bruins are doing.

The team announced they’ve signed general manager Peter Chiarelli to a four-year extension to stay with the organization through the 2017-18 season. He’ll also be the team’s Alternate Governor.

Since Chiarelli took over as GM of the Bruins back in 2006, they’ve made the playoffs in six straight seasons including winning the Stanley Cup in 2011, the team’s first since 1972. Getting a team to the postseason in six of your seven seasons at the helm sounds like a success to me.

He’s spent this summer finding ways to re-work the Bruins roster by shipping out Tyler Seguin and Rich Peverley for Loui Eriksson and signing Jarome Iginla. His time in Boston has seen its share of ups (Cup win) and downs (Tim Thomas and Marc Savard for very different reasons) but the Bruins have yet to crumble under the drama. That says a lot for the job both he and coach Claude Julien have done there.

Chiarelli has done well enough in his job with the Bruins to earn a spot on Team Canada’s executive staff to choose the 2014 Olympic team serving under Lightning GM Steve Yzerman.