Over the next two weeks, the Boston Bruins will be given the luxury of a considerably light schedule, especially by NHL standards, with only three more games slated for the 2011 calendar year. This coupled with the beginning of winter break at colleges across the country, has left me with some extra time to write. Therefore, I’ve decided to start an “All-Division” Series, where I will construct a dream roster for each of the NHL’s six divisions. The roster will feature thirteen forwards, seven defensemen and three goalies. Keep in mind, I have constructed the rosters in compliance with the league’s salary cap, with a minimum of $48.3 MIL and a maximum of $64.3 MIL. However, in some situations, such as one like the Buffalo Sabres are in currently, the cap may be briefly exceeded simply because of how it is re-calibrated each day. Today, I’m going to begin the series with my look at the “Beasts Of The Northeast”. Feel free to leave me comments and suggestions on how you would make the team better!
Forwards ($38.05 MIL)
Phil Kessel (Toronto) $5.4 MIL — Jason Spezza (Ottawa) $7.0 MIL — Joffrey Lupul (Toronto) $4.25 MIL
I like the chemistry shown between Lupul and Kessel up in Toronto; throw in Jason Spezza’s world class play-making abilities, and you’ve got one of the best first lines in the league.
Brad Marchand (Boston) $2.5 MIL — Tyler Seguin (Boston) $3.5 MIL — Max Pacioretty (Montreal) $1.65 MIL
Boston’s duo of sensational sophomores have proven themselves as legitimate top-six forwards in this league. Their speed, coupled with the size and strength of Montreal’s budding power forward would provide a difficult match-up for any D-pairing.
Nick Foligno (Ottawa) $1.2 MIL — Patrice Bergeron (Boston) $5.0 MIL — Clarke MacArthur (Toronto) $3.25 MIL
You have got to love the versatility of this line. All three of these players can be counted on in any situation, including on both sides of special teams.
Daniel Paille (Boston) $1.1 MIL — Gregory Campbell (Boston) $1.1 MIL — Zenon Konopka (Ottawa) $0.70 MIL
Konopka and Campbell are two of the best face-off men in all of the NHL, while Daniel Paille can be a very valuable asset on the penalty-kill. All come at a very reasonable price and provide the team with the necessary grit to excel in today’s NHL.
13th Forward: Nathan Gerbe (Buffalo) $1.4 MIL
Defense ($19.85 MIL)
Zdeno Chara (Boston) $6.9 MIL — Erik Karlsson (Ottawa) $1.3 MIL
Easily the two biggest no-brainers on this team, Chara and Karlsson provide the perfect balance of defense and offense on the squad’s top pair.
P.K. Subban (Montreal) $0.85 MIL — Dennis Seidenberg (Boston) $3.25 MIL
Subban and Seidenberg also provide a great mix of offense and defense. Seidenberg’s veteran savvy and poise should be able to assist the young Subban’s development.
Luke Schenn (Toronto) $3.6 MIL — Andrej Sekera (Buffalo) $2.75 MIL
The youngest pairing of the three, both players should be good enough to one day become top-pair defensemen. Meanwhile, both come at relatively inexpensive cap hits.
7th Defenseman: Jake Gardiner (Toronto) $1.20 MIL
Goaltenders ($7.75 MIL)
1.) Tim Thomas (Boston) $5.0 MIL
2.) Carey Price (Montreal) $2.75 MIL
Boston’s Tim Thomas is once again putting up Vezina-worthy numbers, furthering the notion that he truly ages like a fine wine. Meanwhile, Carey Price, who comes with a manageable price tag, has also asserted himself as one of the best netminders in the game.
Total Salary: $65.65 MIL
Cap Space: $0.00
Representation: Boston 8 , Toronto 5 , Ottawa 4 , Montreal 3 , Buffalo 2
General Manager: Peter Chiarelli (Boston)
Head Coach: Claude Julien (Boston)
– It’s hard to argue with the defending Stanley Cup champion head coach and GM combo.
Home Arena: Bell Centre (Montreal)
– One of the loudest buildings in the league, this one was an easy choice.
– NHL salary cap information courtesy of CapGeek.
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About the Author: Boston Bruins writer for Hockey Independent. Have written for The Hockey Guys and SB Nation Boston. Follow me on Twitter @_BWoodward or shoot me an email at BWoodward.HI@gmail.com.