July 1st, 2013 by

Boston Bruins 2013 season report cards: Defensemen and Goalies

Boston Bruins 2013 season report cards: Defensemen and Goalies

During the next two days, the Bruins Daily staff will be posting their individual grades for the Boston Bruins 2013 season. Today, we take a look at the Bruins’ defensemen and goaltenders, while tomorrow we will grade the Bruins forwards.

Defensemen

Matt Bartkowski:
Regular season: 11GP 0G-2A-2Pts
Playoffs: 7GP 1G-1A-2Pts

Injuries paved the way for Bartkowski to see some action as the Bruins made another deep run in the playoffs and Bartkowski certainly made the most of it. Bartkowski was originally going to be sent to Calgary in the Jerome Iginla deal, but we all know how that played out, and with the way Bartkowski performed in the playoffs, the Bruins are happy he’s still here in Boston.

Bartkowski scored a big goal in the Bruins Game 7 victory over the Maple Leafs in the first round and continued his solid play in the Bruins’ end during their five-game series victory over the Rangers. Bartkowski is a solid blue-liner who can move the puck well with great visison. Bartkowski’s big body and heavy hitting will be fun to watch for years to come.

Grade: B- (AT) Anthony Travalgia

Johnny Boychuk:
Regular season: 44GP 1G-5A-6Pts Even
Playoffs: 22GP 6G-1A-7Pts Minus-1

He played in 44 games this season and netted just one goal and five assists, but boy did he ever come up huge for the Black and Gold in the post season. He had six goals in the post-season while really stepping up his game in all aspects. Boychuk is the type of player that will throw his body around in whatever way the team needs. As his stats don’t jump out at you, it is what he does on the ice that does not show up in the stat sheet that make him an important player.

The B’s would be wise to hold on to Boychuk and not get trigger happy on a trade. He proved his worth in the B’s Stanley Cup run and he was a joy to watch. He is a solid player that puts the team first always.

Grade B+ (CC)

Zdeno Chara:
Regular season: 48GP 7G-12A-19Pts Plus-14
Playoffs: 22GP 3G-12A-15Pts Plus-7

Do not let the last impression of Zdeno Chara be him on the ice for 10 of the Chicago Blackhawks last 12 goals (I know it is tough). This man logs serious minutes against the most-skilled players in the world. He may have had a hip flexor injury during the Stanley Cup Final, but he did not make it an excuse. Chara is a rock for the Bruins in front of Tuukka Rask.

In 48 regular season games, Chara scored seven goals and assisted on 12 others. His presence on the ice alone is an asset for the Black and Gold. His reach, skill and physicality will never go unnoticed even though he is 6-foot-9 on skates. He finished the playoffs with three goals and 12 assists while sporting a plus-7. Any Bruin fan angry at Chara’s play toward the end of the Stanley Cup Final is understood, but to say get rid of him or trade him, you may need to look yourself in the mirror.

Grade A- (CC) Chris Chirichiello

Andrew Ference:
Regular season: 48GP 4G-9A-13Pts Plus-9
Playoffs: 14GP 0G-2A-2Pts Plus-2

It was a season of up and downs for Ference in 2013 where many people wanted him watching the games from the press box at times. But there were also times when Ference flashed his skills and helped the B’s in many ways. Ference played in all 48 games for the Black and Gold scoring four goals and assisting on nine others, but it was his leadership on and off the ice which makes him special.

During the Stanley Cup run, Ference really was rock solid for his team. Due to salary cap issues, the B’s will not be bringing back Ference which will leave B’s fans with a big void in their heart. He was a true-professional and all-around great guy and player.

Grade B (CC)

Dougie Hamilton:
Regular season: 42GP 5G-11A-16Pts Plus-4
Playoffs: 7GP 0G-3A-3Pts Even

Hamilton’s rookie season was a decent one for the 20-year old. Hamilton showed signs of brilliance, but also struggled at times, exactly what you would expect from a 20-year old kid playing in the National Hockey League. Hamilton showed some tremendous offensive skill at times with his great vision and great passing skills.

Hamilton is a big kid who is only going to grow and that can only benefit Hamilton and the Bruins. Hamilton was solid for the Bruins in the seven games he suited up in for the Bruins during the playoffs where he averaged just over 15 minutes of time on ice per game.

Grade:  C+ (AT)

Torey Krug:
Regular season: 1GP 0G-1A-1Pt Minus-1
Playoffs: 15GP 4G-2A-6Pts Plus-5

On March 27th, Bruins GM Peter Chiarelli made the call to Providence for the services of 5’9 defenseman, Torey Krug prior to a meeting with the Montreal Canadiens at the TD Garden. In his only regular season game played in 2013, Krug notched an assist in the 6-5 OT defeat.

Heading into the second round of the NHL Playoffs with a banged up defensive core, Chiarelli once again called upon Krug against the Rangers and the Michigan State alum responded by essentially taking over the series. Krug finished with four goals, 1 assist and a +3 rating in just five games played. However, over the next ten games against the Penguins and Blackhawks, Krug registered just one assist. While the hype remains high on Krug, it’s important for B’s fans to remember he’s still in a adjustment phase and growing pains should be expected throughout the 2013-2014 season.
 
Grade: B+ (DSP)

Adam McQuaid:
Regular season: 32GP 1G-3A-4Pts Even
Playoffs: 22GP 2G-2A-4Pts Plus-9

Over his last 104 games played during the regular season, McQuaid has registered totals of 3 goals and 11 assists, but a +16 rating over the two year span. The Bruins don’t pay McQuaid to generate offense and a +9 rating in the playoffs should be a pretty good indicator of how he earns his paycheck.

 McQuaid battled back from a rash of injuries that plagued him at the end of the 2011-2012 season and the corresponding offseason that followed, resulting in his worst season in Boston. If you’re a “stay-at-home” defenseman, you don’t tally an even +/- rating during the regular season, especially in a defensive-minded system that Julien operates. Hopefully, McQuaid’s playoff performance will be an indicator of his play for the upcoming season, but I’m not a believer.
Grade: C (DSP)

Wade Redden:
Regular season: 6GP 1G-1A-2Pts Even
Playoffs: 5GP 1G-1A-2Pts Plus-2

In search of defensemen depth at the trade deadline with few selling teams, Peter Chiarelli acquired end-of-the-road veteran, Wade Redden. Obviously, the glory days of being an elite NHL defenseman were extinct for Redden, but filled in adequately when called upon this season.

 Overall, Redden suited up in just six regular season games in Boston and tallied a goal and an assist. Bruins fans will always remember the unheralded effort(5 GP, 1 G, 1 A, 1 PPA, +2) Redden turned in during the first round of the NHL Playoffs against Toronto, which could very well be the last games of his playing career. Heading into this offseason, I believe Redden’s played his last game in Boston and in the NHL for that matter.
Grade: C+ (DSP)

Dennis Seidenberg:
Regular season: 46GP 4G-13A-17Pts Plus-18
Playoffs: 18GP 0G-1A-1Pts Plus-1

During the regular season Seidenberg was often paired with Hamilton and that seemed to hinder his play a bit as Hamilton continued to learn the defensive side of NHL hockey. Seidenberg struggled with his game at times during the regular season and wasn’t that same Seidenberg we’ve seen in previous years.

The playoffs didn’t get any better for Seidenberg as a lower body injury caused him to miss four games, but the injury clearly nagged him throughout the playoffs as No. 44 finished a minus-5 during the Stanley Cup Finals.

Grade C+ (AT)

 

Goalies

Tuukka Rask:
Regular season: 36GP 19W-10L-5OTL 5SO 2.00 GAA .929 SV%
Playoffs: 22GP 14W-7L-1OTL 3SO 1.88 GAA .940 SV%

Coming into the season there were many doubts about Tuukka Rask and if he got handle a full season as the number one guy. Even though it wasn’t a full regular season thanks to the lockout, Rask silenced all the critics and gave the Bruins nothing but confidence moving forward.

Rask was even betting in the playoffs where he helped lead the club to within two wins of another Stanley Cup. Rask came up with timely saves throughout the playoffs, and kept the Bruins in games with other key saves. A restricted free agent to-be, Rask is set for a nice payday as the Bruins goalie of the future.

Grade: A (AT)

Anton Khudobin:
Regular season: 14GP 9W-4L-1OTL 1SO 2.32 GAA .920 SV%
Playoffs: N/A

The 27-year-old native of Kazakhstan exceeded all expectations in his first “full” NHL season as a backup to Tuukka Rask. Making just 14 appearances, Khudobin finished with a 9-4-1 record, 2.32 GAA and a ..920 Sv%, including a 26-save shutout over the Sabres in Buffalo.

Khudobin heads into this offseason as an unrestricted free agent who most likely will be looking for a bump in salary from the $800,000 he received this past season. With a lowered salary cap in 2013-2014, it’s more than likely Bruins fans see Niklas Svedberg as Boston’s backup goaltender this upcoming season.
Grade:B+ (DSP)

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