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Mar 8, 2014; Tampa, FL, USA; Boston Bruins defenseman Matt Bartkowski (43) skates with the puck against the Tampa Bay Lightning during the third period at Tampa Bay Times Forum. Boston Bruins defeated the Tampa Bay Lightning 4-3 in a shootout. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Boston Bruins sign Matt Bartkowski

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The Boston Bruins signed defenseman Matt Bartkowski to a one-year deal worth $1.25 million on Tuesday. The restricted free agent avoided arbitration by signing the deal. Unfortunately for Bartkowski, that deal only means he’s the property of the Bruins for as long the team decides which defenseman they will likely trade in an attempt to leverage their depth on the blue line and improve the team elsewhere.

Matt Bartkowski fills in as roughly the seventh defenseman on the depth chart, which makes him an easy target for a trade rumor. CSNNE’s Joe Haggerty writes that Bartkowski sees all these rumors as a ‘hindrance’ and instead chooses to focus on what he can control.

“I really don’t pay too much attention to it. There’s no real reason to. I think it’s only just a hindrance to worry about where you’re going to end up and all that,” said Bartkowski. “You just prepare for what you can, and the team you’re on. If something happens, it happens.

At 26, Bartkowski is just getting underway as a regular defenseman in the NHL. If the Bruins trade him, it will likely be a blessing in disguise. With one of the best, deepest blue line cores in the league, Boston simply can’t offer Bartkowski the minutes that another team could.

In the long run, a trade of any kind to shake loose some minutes for Bartkowski in Boston or somewhere else would be the best thing for him and the teams involved.

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Tags: Boston Bruins

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