Zdeno Chara is set to become a UFA this offseason and is looking to play another season. Chara has been with the Bruins and captained the team since he signed back in 2007, sparking a long successful run for a dormant Boston Bruins franchise.
Chara has been the ultimate competitor and one of the league’s best captains. Problem is, he doesn’t have it anymore. He’s slow, his scoring touch is all but gone, and in a league that is as fast as it’s ever been, he simply can’t keep up in any of the 3 zones anymore.
This decision won’t be an easy one for Sweeney. 33 is going to be raised to the rafters in the coming years and letting a guy go with that status is a tall drink to swallow. His locker room presence is immeasurable and will be impossible to replace.
At this point his on ice play is hurting the team far more than it’s helping. He’s still a good penalty killer but anywhere else on the ice he’s consistently getting beat to pucks and playing catch up. The Bruins have Carlo and McAvoy primed to take over the 1 and 2 spot with guys like Grzelcyk, Clifton, Vaakanainen, and Lauzon looking to step up in their young careers.
If I’m Don Sweeney I move on from Chara this offseason. He’s been an incredible Boston Bruins and will go down in history as one of their best defenseman ever, but the door should be closed on his career in black and gold. It’s time to put the “C” on Bergeron’s chest and start a new chapter.