( Photo Credit: Boston Bruins / NHL.com )

By: Mark Allred | Follow me on Twitter @BlackAndGold277

The National Hockey League’s 2024 Trade Deadline was a whirlwind of activity before the Friday, March 8th, 3pm deadline. The Boston Bruins organization made minimal moves, improving their team with the limited assets the club had to offer.

One of the moves was when the B’s acquired defenseman Andrew Peeke from the Columbus Blue Jackets in a move that has already begun to pay dividends after two appearances. Before the trade, Peeke, a former second-round pick in 2016 for Columbus, appeared in 23 games and was often a healthy scratch after participating in 80+ games for the Ohio organization the previous two seasons.

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Peeke is a 6′-3″, 214-pound right-shooting defenseman who has played in 220 career NHL games, posting 10-33-43 numbers, while being known for his defensive reliability and physicality on the ice. The Boston Bruins organization believes that the Florida native has more upside to his defensive game as the 26-year-old has two full seasons under contract, which seems an incredible value at $2.75 million per season.

The trade deal between the Boston Bruins and Columbus Blue Jackets was a strategic move by the Bruins. Recognizing the need for a strong, dependable presence in their defensive line-up, they opted for Peeke, who had consistently demonstrated these qualities during his tenure with the Blue Jackets, even if it was in a limited role.

The Bruins’ management believed that Peeke’s skill set would complement their existing team dynamics and augment their defense while being a potential replacement for current Bruins defenseman Derek Forbort, who’s unlikely to return after this season. The Bruins sent defenseman, and former 2015 NHL Draft pick Jakub Zboril and a third-round selection in 2027 to Ohio for Peeke’s services.

Andrew Peeke’s arrival in Boston was met with anticipation and excitement as the blueliner looks to get a fresh start with a new organization. As a player known for his discipline and tenacity, the transition to a new team and city is never expected to be smooth, but the pro has been absorbing every minute, and it shows in his character meeting with the media. True to form, Peeke quickly adapted to his new surroundings, demonstrating his professionalism on and off the ice.

Head Coach Jim Montgomery was immediately impressed with Peeke. He admired the defenseman’s work ethic, team-first mentality, and ability to make smart decisions under pressure, which Montgomery believes can significantly enhance the Bruins’ defensive capabilities.

Montgomery had this to say about Peeke and his game since arriving in Boston, “He’s got plenty of courage. His gaps are really good; he’s right in people’s faces, he’s not afraid of confrontational areas, whether it’s at the net front in corners at blue lines, and then I thought he’s supporting the play really well for someone that’s just new to our team.” Montgomery later added, “What I’ve noticed is that he has a smile on his face, and he seems to be soaking in a lot. So, to your point, the opportunity of playing a playoff, the opportunity to be on a team that is one of the top teams in the league, is something that’s really exciting for him.

Since the trade, Andrew Peeke’s performance with the Bruins has been nothing short of impressive. He has seamlessly integrated into the Bruins’ system, bringing stability and strength to the defensive line. A comparison of his performance now with his time at the Blue Jackets reveals a player who has continued to grow and improve, adapting effectively to his new team’s style of play.

Looking ahead, expectations are high for Andrew Peeke’s future with the Boston Bruins. Coach Montgomery plans to continue utilizing Peeke in crucial situations, confident in his ability to rise to the occasion. The hope is that Peeke will not only maintain his current level of performance but continue to elevate his game as he grows more accustomed to his new team.

In conclusion, the transition of Andrew Peeke from the Columbus Blue Jackets to the Boston Bruins has been a win for all involved. Peeke’s impressive performance since the trade has solidified his place in the Bruins’ line-up and made him a valuable asset to the team. With his skill set, work ethic, and team-first mentality, the future looks bright for Andrew Peeke in Boston.