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Former Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli named finalist for NHL GM of the Year

05.17.17 at 6:03 pm ET
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Peter Chiarelli is among the three finalists for 2017 NHL GM of the Year. (Steve Mitchell/USA Today Sports)

Peter Chiarelli is among the three finalists for 2017 NHL GM of the Year. (Steve Mitchell/USA Today Sports)

Former Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli has more than landed on his feet since being fired by the B’s back in 2015.

The NHL has recognized that, too, as Chiarelli has been named as one of the three finalists for the the league’s GM of the Year Award.

It’s proof that, well, good things can happen to your career when you have the No. 1 pick in a draft year featuring a generational talent.

There’s no sense in denying the obvious luck Chiarelli backed into when he was able to nab the game’s best player in Connor McDavid with that aforementioned No. 1 pick  in 2015, and it only improved once No. 97 suited up for the Oilers.

But beyond that…

Chiarelli made his biggest free agent splashes to date when he added both Milan Lucic and Andrej Sekera on long-term deals. Sekera has delivered as a viable top-four defenseman for an Oilers team that has been a disaster defensively throughout their laborious rebuild, but Lucic has been utterly terrible at five-on-five play, and is under contract at $6 million per season until he’s 35. Chiarelli also pulled the trigger on one of the more unusual one-for-one player swaps in recent league history (and probably became the only GM in league history to trade both the No. 1 and No. 2 draft picks from one year’s draft class, I’d have to imagine), with Taylor Hall sent to the Devils in exchange for defenseman Adam Larsson last summer.

At the same time, Chiarelli has done a solid job of turning projects like Zack Kassian, Patrick Maroon, and defenseman Kris Russell into positive additions for the club, and for that he deserves a definite pat on the back. That is of course until he inevitably decides to overextend them, win a bidding war against himself, and sign them each to paydays they’ll never justify.

Nashville’s David Poile and Senators GM Pierre Dorion were named the other finalists.

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