By: Andrew Thompson Twitter: @godwentwhoops
The Boston Bruins found a way to avoid arbitration with forward Ryan Spooner today, signing him to a one-year, $2.825 million dollar contract. The contract is a near split down the middle from what the Bruins ($2 million) and Spooner ($3.85 million) wanted.
In the short term, both sides walked away with a win. Spooner got nearly a $ 2 million dollar raise. As for the Bruins, they now have all but one player (forward David Pastrnak) locked up going into camp in September.
Even with a contract, Spooner’s place in the lineup isn’t a lock. He’ll be facing stiff competition from Jakob Forsbacka-Karlsson in battling for the B’s third-line center position at training camp.
Spooner had some issues with Boston last season. He wasn’t the favorite of either head coach in Boston last year. Claude Julien had issues with his defensive game, and Bruce Cassidy had problems with his offensive game. Those issues caused him to be scratched in the final two playoff games against Ottawa last season.
The 25-year old Spooner had some issues last season with Boston . Spooner wasn’t the favorite of either head coach in Boston last year. Claude Julien had issues with his defensive game, and Bruce Cassidy had problems with his offensive game. Those issues caused him to be scratched in the final two playoff games against Ottawa last season.
At the end of the season, Cassidy called out Spooner for his liabilites on local media.
“Listen, we all know he’s not that guy that’s going to be planting himself in front of the net and absorbing hits every shift, but he still needs to attack with the puck when there is some open ice,” said Cassidy about Spooner. “And like I said, there wasn’t a lot, but there were creases out there where he could have used his foot speed, and that was the conversation with him. When those situations arose, we needed him to make his plays and attack. It didn’t happen, so we moved on to the next player. We’re here to win; we were kind of leaving it all out there and I thought our guys played hard, the guys that went in, so you kind of look at it as more give them credit for going in and doing their job and we’ll continue to work with Ryan.
“Listen, he’s a special talent. We’ve just got to continue to try to pull it out of him and see where it leads us.”
Spooner had 39 points (11 goals) last year for the Black and Gold. Those 39 points were good enough for sixth overall on the team, but it was a 10 point (2 goal) backslide from the year before.
While Spooner will have some place on the team this year, he’s going to have to prove he wants to be in Boston if he has any hope of staying with the team at the end of the upcoming season.