One of the many NHL veterans that has yet to announce their future is Zdeno Chara. The once Bruins captain may not return to the Washington Capitals. This leaves him a free agent and potentially his career in the question. Perhaps for just a formality, the Bruins should re-sign the man that lead the team to a Stanley Cup.
Why Re-Sign Chara?
While Chara has had one of the most storied carriers and NHL defenseman can have, his best years are long gone. Not many teams are exactly jumping at the prospect of picking up an old defenseman. What Chara does have though is leadership and experience. Being the captain of one of the NHL’s most successful franchises this century does that.
It has been talked about extensively in the past, the Bruins missed Zdeno Chara’s leadership. Patrice Bergeron obviously is a great leader as well, but losing like Chara is hard to recover from. Chara always lead by example, never wavering or quitting. Even with a broken jaw, Chara played in the 2019 Cup Final. Despite not coming up with the Cup that year, that type of leadership still sends echoes throughout a team.
Do The Bruins Even Have Room For Chara?
The Bruins were a very busy team this offseason. While not exactly making a big splash, Boston did make sure to sign plenty of players to fill potential gaps. One of those signings was Derek Forbort. The left shot defenseman is expected to play in a depth role for Boston’s blue line.
The issue with that when talking about Chara, is that is the role Chara would most likely also play in Boston. Compound that with the amount of young defenseman on the Bruins, and there really is not much space for Chara. If Chara were to come back, there would be a good chance he does not see much ice time. That was the main factor behind Chara leaving in 2020 and the situation is not much different in 2021.
Does Either Side Even Want This?
Most likely neither the Bruins nor Chara have any interest in a reunion. Which is sad to say given what Chara had done for the Bruins. But hockey is still a business after all, just like any sport. Chara knows he won’t be a fit on the current Bruins, and the Bruins have no plans of bringing Chara back.
Most likely the only way Chara signs with Boston this season is if decides to retire. Without a doubt, Boston would allow for a symbolic one day contract just so Chara can retire a Bruin. An actual reunion does sound nice on paper, but it just is not feasible. Sometimes in sports, teams and players just move on.
‘From our Haus to yours’