Bruins’ Management Happy With Matt Grzelyck’s Season In Boston

'We're happy he is a Bruin'


May 9, 2023

Boston Bruins defenseman Matt Grzelyck was supposed to miss more of the beginning of the season than he did while he recuperated from offseason surgery.

But in reality, he only needed four games before making his debut against the Anaheim Ducks on October 20.

After acquiring defenseman Dmitry Orlov prior to the trade deadline, Bruins head coach Jim Montgomery had planned on rotating the defensive core as a way to keep guys healthy heading into the postseason. Unfortunately for Montgomery, he didn’t have much of an opportunity to implement his plan because Derek Forbort was injured with only 13 games remaining in the regular season.

Fast forward to Game 1 of the Bruins’ first-round matchup with the Florida Panthers in the Stanley Cup playoffs; Forbort was back and healthy, so Montgomery opted to go with the proven penalty killer over Grzelyck.

It wasn’t until Game 3 of the series Montgomery went back to the Charlestown defenseman in favor of Connor Clifton. The Bruins were not only brought to the brink by Florida, but the Panthers also won the series to advance while Boston was left wondering how their historic season could end so quickly.

At the final press conference at TD Garden on Tuesday, general manager Don Sweeney was asked about Grzelyck’s season and his future in Boston.

“Matt had a really, really strong year,” Sweeney said. “You know, the lineup changes that we decided to make with him and Connor, situations be it on the road or physicality or some of the opportunities that we felt comfortable playing all seven, eight defensemen that we had on our roster. We felt in years past, we certainly have tested that to the level of 10 deep. So, Matt had a really good year.”

Sweeney acknowledged that Orlov affected the way the defensive core shook out down the stretch and in the postseason.

“Jim is moving the pieces around and playing players,” Sweeney said. “We certainly upset the apple cart and his usage, bringing in Orlov and that was to address the depth and need that we felt we could really utilize throughout a long playoff run.”

Grzelyck has one year left on his four-year contract while both Clifton and Orlov are free agents, with the latter expecting it to be his last contract in the NHL. Sweeney mentioned at the press conference the roster would not look the same, but he didn’t say Grzelyck wouldn’t be a part of it.

“We’re going to look at all the roster things… It’s not just that Grizzy could fit in and play with Charlie,” Sweeney said. “There’s a tremendous amount of flexibility with Matt, and we’re happy he is a Bruin.”

Sweeney will have his work cut out for him this offseason but with Charlie McAvoy, Brandon Carlo and Hampus Lindholm at the center of the defensive core, he has some options at the blue line.

Thumbnail photo via Eric Hartline/USA TODAY Sports Images
Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Nick Pivetta
Previous Article

Red Sox Wrap: First-Inning Braves Rally Leads Boston To Loss Column

Atlanta Braves first baseman Matt Olson and outfielder Ronald Acuna Jr.
Next Article

Red Sox Notes: Nick Pivetta Moving On From ‘Bad Day’ Vs. Braves

Picked For You