Assessing Boston Bruins’ Interest in Jacob Middletonby Jamie Gatlin March 11, 2022 0 comments
With the NHL trade deadline quickly approaching, the Boston Bruins are expected to be a busy team. The Bruins currently own the top Wild Card spot but need reinforcements. One player they have been connected to is San Jose Sharks defenseman Jacob Middleton. The 26-year-old is not known for his offense, but his physical style of play is an intriguing option for Boston.
In 39 games this season, Middleton has landed 76 hits. He has not been afraid to sacrifice his body as evidenced by his 70 blocked shots and 19 takeaways. While this season has been his first as a regular, he has been one of the Sharks’ most reliable players. For a Bruins team that has been criticized for its lack of toughness, Middleton would be a welcomed addition.
Although the former seventh-round pick does not light up the stat sheet, he has contributed offensively. Through 737 minutes of ice time this year, Middleton has eight points. Entering the season, he only had three through his first 14 NHL games. He can provide occasional offense and could be a depth piece for the Bruins entering the playoffs.
Jacob Middleton’s first NHL goal 🙌 pic.twitter.com/jsEWRE4gBD
— Sharks on NBCS (@NBCSSharks) November 25, 2021
Additionally, Middleton has excelled on the penalty kill and isn’t afraid to drop the gloves. So far this season, he has nine fighting majors for a Sharks team with only 55 points. His willingness to drop the gloves will be critical when the stakes are higher in the postseason. However, he will not fill all of the Bruins’ holes.
What Middleton would bring to the Bruins
Middleton isn’t a top-four defenseman, and he has no playoff experience. The Bruins still need a No. 1 left-shot defenseman to play alongside Charlie McAvoy. They have been linked to Jakob Chychrun and Ben Chiarot, who are expected to draw heavy interest. Middleton could be a good alternative as he has held his own this year in a more significant role with San Jose.
Regardless of what the Bruins decide, Middleton brings strength and size. He is not afraid of mixing it up in the defensive zone and is averaging a career-high 18:53 of ice time per game. As the trade deadline approaches, he will be a name to keep an eye on for a Bruins team looking to fortify their playoff roster.
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