If you can say one thing about new general manager Don Sweeney it’s that he’s not afraid to make a trade. Plenty of analysts have chosen to say more though and much of it isn’t nice.
Boston acquired enforcer Zac Rinaldo from the Philadelphia Flyers this afternoon in exchange for a third round pick. That’s an awfully high pick to give for a player that averaged 8:55 minutes per game in 58 contests and has had discipline problems leading to suspensions and bad penalties.
It also might be seen as the straw that broke the camel’s back after his recent controversial trades involving Dougie Hamilton and Milan Lucic. So naturally the reaction wasn’t kind…
What are the Bruins doing?
— Brian Compton (@BComptonNHL) June 29, 2015
That sound you hear is 29 GMs furiously dialing up Don Sweeney in the hopes of trying to make a deal.
— Mike Halford (@HalfordPHT) June 29, 2015
Tomorrow, Bruins GM Don Sweeney will wake up and say “I did what?!” I’m still doing a double take at the release. #FlyersTalk
— John Boruk (@JohnBorukCSN) June 29, 2015
My kid needs to stop making his NHL 15 deals public https://t.co/Tqxl8pbLff
— Arthur Staple (@StapeNewsday) June 29, 2015
I’ve been off the grid for an hour and the #Bruins have to be drunk. Zac Freaking Rinaldo for a third-round pick? I’d fire Sweeney today.
— Mike Harrington (@BNHarrington) June 29, 2015
And the one that perhaps best summarizes the general consensus:
Also, for the record, I still have no idea what Don Sweeney is doing
— JoshuaCooper (@JoshuaCooper) June 29, 2015
Joe Haggerty expanded on that sentiment for CSN New England:
One begins to wonder exactly what the master plan is from the Bruins front office over on Causeway Street after witnessing their scattershot method to constructing the Bruins roster over the last few days.
It also makes one wonder where the 31-year-old Max Talbot fits into the picture after he was brought in to be the fourth line center for the Black and Gold following his deal from the Colorado Avalanche at last spring’s trade deadline.
You could make the argument that this is also the first trade Sweeney that had very little to do with former GM Peter Chiarelli. With Hamilton and Lucic, even if you disagreed with the return or the need to move them, an argument could at least be made that Sweeney was responding to the difficult cap situation he inherited from Chiarelli. That’s not applicable to the Rinaldo deal.
All that being said, general managers are critiqued on the individual moves they make, but typically their employment is dependent on the record of their team. Sweeney might be drawing plenty of criticism right now and a lot of it might be justified, but if his version of the Bruins are successful next season, then that will be that.