Could Whitney be a good fit on D for B’s?
Chiarelli told CSNNE.com last weekend that he’s looking for a defenseman as well as a winger to enhance Boston’s roster, and a puck-moving left shot blueliner would be at the top of the list. In a perfect world the defenseman would also serve as the power play quarterback that Tomas Kaberle never was two years ago for Boston on its way to the Stanley Cup.
The perfect name at the top of Boston’s list would be Swiss defenseman Mark Streit, who is entering the final month of his walk year with the New York Islanders as an offensive defenseman. Those within the Isles organization have sent out of the smoke signals that they’re hoping to sign Streit to a contract extension, and they sit only a couple of points out of a playoff spot. Streit has five goals and 16 points along with a minus-14 for the Bruins this season, and six of fellow defenseman Lubomir Visnovsky’s nine points this season have been on the power play.
Keith Yandle would be the perfect option if the Phoenix Coyotes ever made him available, but it would take a pretty hefty package to get him out of the desert.
Other defensemen like Jay Bouwmeester and San Jose’s Dan Boyle are familiar names with price tags that might be reasonable, but they also come with additional guaranteed seasons on their contract beyond this year.
That would essentially force the Bruins to pay full price for them at the deadline even though the organization would likely buy out the rest of their contracts following the playoff run. That might be a tough sell to Bruins ownership given it would be for 10-15 regular season games plus the playoff run. But it would also give the Bruins insurance/depth during the playoffs just in case they needed to scale back Dougie Hamilton’s role amidst his first experience in the Stanley Cup playoff pressure cooker.
One intriguing name for the Bruins is Oilers defenseman Ryan Whitney, who skated with guys like Shawn Thornton, Milan Lucic, Brad Marchand and Adam McQuaid at informal skates during the NHL lockout. The 30-year-old Scituate native and former BU defenseman has 3 goals and 10 points in 27 games along with a minus-11 rating while averaging upwards of 18 minutes per game.