With that said, most thought the Bruins would struggle without those three pieces in the lineup. Instead, they have thrived off of that and are tied for the most points with the Vegas Golden Knights.
One of the biggest bright spots this season has been the play of goaltender Jeremy Swayman. Since he debuted with the Boston Bruins in the 2020-21 season, he has been lights out and one of Boston’s most consistent players.
Jeremy Swayman is a big key to the success that the Boston Bruins are having
Drafted 111th overall in the 2017 NHL Draft, he has come along nicely and has posted some impressive numbers. The 6-foot-2 and 194-pound native of Anchorage, Alaska is playing well this season and is just in time for a new contract.
During the 2022-23 season, he posted an impressive record of 24-6-4 with a 2.27 goals-against-average, a .920 save percentage, and four shutouts. He and fellow goaltender Linus Ullmark would take home the William M. Jennings trophy for the fewest goals against in the regular season.
This season, Swayman has been equally good, if not better, than Ullmark. He has a 7-0-1 record, a 1.73 GAA, a .941 save percentage, and one shutout.
His stats are better across the board than Ullmark, who won the Vezina Trophy last season for the league’s best goaltender, In his last five games, Swayman is 4-0-1 with 10 goals against. For his career, he is 61-23-8, with a 2.20 GAA, a .922 save percentage, and 10 shutouts.
Boston is 13-1-2 for 28 points, first in the Atlantic Division. The Bruins also have a goal differential of +24 which is second behind the Vancouver Canucks who are a +30.
Swayman is in the top 10 of many goaltending statistics this season. His seven wins are eighth, his .941 save percentage is second, his 1.73 GAA is second, and his two shutouts are tied for third.
His play has been something the Bruins had hoped he would continue as he is in a contract year. If not re-signed, he would become a restricted free agent as the last deal he signed was a one-year deal with an AAV of $3.475 million.
The Bruins are in a bit of a cap space problem. This season, they have a projected cap space of $54, 681. While Swayman will not be an RFA until after the season, Boston management has something to think about.
Ullmark is locked in at $5 million next season and will be an unrestricted free agent in the 2025-26 season but has a modified no-trade clause. With the way that Swayman is playing, do not rule him out for some Vezina Trophy talk and a new contact.
Swayman is 24 years old and already has an impressive resume in a short NHL career. Ullmark is 30 years old and in the prime of his career.
Swayman has earned a new contract based on his play since he arrived in the NHL. He has played extremely well while flying underneath the radar.
Goaltenders Ukko-Pekka Lukkonen (54), Michael DiPietro (64), Matt Villalta (72), Kirill Ustimenko (80), Daniil Tarasov (86), Keith Petruzzelli (88), Maksim Zhukov (96), and Eetu Makiniemi (104) were selected ahead of Swayman in the NHL Draft. These goaltenders have had little to no success in the NHL.
Swayman is capable of putting up elite numbers and is deserving of the success he has had. He has put himself out there as one of the best young goaltenders in the league and should be in the Vezina Trophy conversation.
This may be the time for Bruins management to sit down and think of who they want to lead the Bruins for the next 10 years between the pipes, Swayman or Ullmark. Swayman is pushing hard for that role and he might be making it harder on management than fans might think.