B's give youngsters first shot at replacing Seidenberg

B's give youngsters first shot at replacing Seidenberg
December 31, 2013, 10:00 am
Share This Post

WILMINGTON -- The Bruins don’t appear to be on the verge of dealing for a veteran defenseman to replace Dennis Seidenberg, out of the season after tearing the ACL and MCL in his knee, instead wanting to see what they have in their youngsters before potentially making a move.

Coach Claude Julien knows there’s a limit to what he can ask out of players like Dougie Hamilton, Torey Krug and Kevan Miller, but also believes they have the talent to survive without Seidenberg in the short term.

The real question will be whether the B’s can taste success in the playoffs without a proven, clutch, tough performer in Seidenberg, who always elevates his game during the postseason.

“I think sometimes things can get overanalyzed with these injuries," Julien said. "I’m not expecting Torey Krug to step up and turn into a hitting machine. He’s going to continue to play his game, and do the best he can. It’s up to us as a coaching staff to put the pairs together depending on who we’re playing against, and what the situation is going to be. That’s why you’ve seen different pairings in every game whether it’s the top lines, whether it’s size or whether it’s something else.

“We’re trying to work around that. When you’re missing Zdeno Chara and Dennis Seidenberg in one game" -- as they were in a 4-3 loss to Ottawa last Saturday -- "you’re missing a lot of size and strength. Even though our other guys battled hard, you’ve got to be honest that you don’t have that same size and presence as far as separating guys from pucks and getting it out of your own end quickly.

"Once Chara is back then you’re down just Seidenberg, and you have a big, strong guy in Miller coming in. [Seidenberg] has always been a good playoff performer for us, and maybe at that point you see where you are. Whether we make a deal or we’re happy with what we have, we’ll cross that bridge when we get to it.”