Wednesday, March 05, 2014

Canadiens Acquire Bruins Killer Thomas Vanek

While the Boston Bruins didn't do much at the deadline, acquiring Andrej "Meh"-szaros, up in Montreal the Habs traded for Thomas Vanek. Vanek, when he was a member of the Buffalo Sabres, absolutely killed the Bruins.

In Vanek's career against the Bruins he's played 53 games, scoring 30 goals with 31 assists. He's +21. 14 of those 30 goals came on the power play. Which Montreal needed to improve, and the Bruins have had difficulty defending since Dennis Seidenberg's injury.

Vanek has a 20.0% career shooting percentage against the Bruins. Which is ridiculous. He scores every 5 shots he takes against the B's.

Vanek also has decent numbers against the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Tampa Lightning. With the new divisional formatting of the NHL playoffs, the Habs will likely have to go through these teams. If the season ended today, the Canadiens would play Tampa Bay, then face the winner of a Toronto/Boston series.

I mentioned Montreal's power play. Typically the Habs bring a frightening power play to the table, but this year it's been a disappointment. They're 13th in the NHL with a 19.7% scoring rate with a man advantage. They're tied for 8th with 41 power play goals.

Vanek hasn't been great on the power play since leaving Buffalo. However, a few seasons ago he routinely scored 10+ power play goals a season, including 20 in 2008-09. If he can find that form in Montreal, it might be time for Bruins fans to have a Vanek-panic attack.

The B's have lost both their games against Montreal this season, and will play the Habs next Wednesday up at the Bell Centre and again on March 24th in Boston.

Photo Credit:
Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

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