Over a year later…
About 3 weeks ago was the anniversary of the Joe Thornton trade that sent him to the SJ Sharks in exchange for Wayne Primeau, Marco Sturm, and Brad Stuart. This, at the time was currently looked at as a HORRIBLE trade for the Boston Bruins. And this became an even stronger opinion after Thornton had a fantastic finish to the season, and walked away with the Art Ross, as well as the Hart Trophy, while the Boston Bruins had a year to forget. Well its now over a year later and most people’s opinion have not changed. ‘THE BRUINS GOT SCREWED!’ Well, this article is being used to give a detailed rebuttal on why, not only did they not ‘get screwed’, but it fact, the Bruins have WON THIS TRADE! (However so has SJ….)Whether accidental or not, many positive things have resulted in this trade for the Bruins.
FIRST- As soon as Joe Thornton left the team, there was a larger role put into place for the Bruin’s Patrice Bergeron. Over the last year, Patrice Bergeron has turned himself into a 21 year old leader of the Boston Bruins. He has become a dominant player with his new responsibilities, and is currently on pace for roughly a 100 point campaign, AS A 21 YEAR OLD! But this is not the time to praise him with the other reasons he is such an incredible talent.. It is arguable as to whether or not he would be this good if he was behind the spotlight of Big Joe!
SECOND- The emergence of Brad Stuart this year has been a treat to watch. He has contributed some big goals, but what is going unnoticed by those not following the Bruins, is how well he has been doing away from the puck. He is second on the team in hits, and has been far and away, the Bruins #2 D-man, and a damn good one at that! He has been great defensively, and every game he keeps on showing how valuable of an asset he is. He has been one of the best half-surprises this year. Look for the Bruins to make a very valiant effort to resign him after January 1 (the time where his new contract wouldn’t impact this years cap).
THIRD- After last year, with Thornton being gone, and Zhamnov being a huge bust and being forced to retire, the Bruins needed to add a top end center. In comes the signing of Marc Savard. Almost EVERYONE (don’t deny it, you did) said that Savard would not come close to putting up the 97 points he did for the Thrashers. Well he has done an excellent job proving everyone wrong in this respect! He has turned Glen Murray back into the 40+ goal scorer (on pace for 45) that no one thought he could be again without Joe. Just to update everyone on Marc Savard vs. Joe Thornton:
Savard- 31 GP 11 Goals 30 Assists for 41 PTS +3
Thornton 34 GP 9 Goals 30 Assists for 39 PTS -5
Savard is on pace for 29 Goals 79 Assists 108 PTS- Surpassing the number ‘he wouldn’t match’ by 11 pts!
Thornton is on pace for 22 Goals 72 Assists 94 PTS
PLEASE NOTE: Thornton is a -5 on an obviously better team, while Savard is +3…
FOURTH- This is another thing that at the beginning of the trade, could obviously have not been predicted, but has worked out for the B’s. But nonetheless, I’m mentioning it…. After the trade last year, Boston had a terrible season, and the result of this would be a top 5 pick in the 2006 NHL entry draft. This would turn out to be a blessing, as the Bruins were able to pick up Phil Kessel. No need for me to tell people about him, everyone knows… While he has not excelled this year yet, he has still shown potential to be a lethal goal scorer in the NHL. To add this young talent to an already young Bruins core, was a huge bonus for the Bruins. Mark my words- THIS KID WILL BE GREAT! One of my personal favourites..
Lastly, let me make it clear that I am aware, that all 3 of the players received (Sturm, Stuart, Primeau) are UFAs at the end of this year. This gives the potential to have nothing to show for the trade…. I am not aware of their intentions with Sturm or Primeau, but the Bruins organization is going to do whatever it takes to get Stuart under contract!
Hopefully this article has shown people that a year later, the Bruins are a better team NOW, and for the future because of the Joe Thornton trade, that at one point was dubbed ‘one of the worst trades ever made’