By Matt Dolloff, CBS Boston
BOSTON (CBS) — When he’s been on the ice for the Boston Bruins, Noel Acciari has brought consistent physicality and speed to the fourth line. GM Don Sweeney has decided to help shore up his bottom-six and reward the hard-working Acciari with a new two-year deal.
Sweeney announced on Wednesday that the Bruins have signed Acciari to a two-year deal worth an average annual value of $725,000. The contract is a one-way deal, meaning Acciari will be paid the same amount whether he plays in the NHL or AHL – indicating that he is likely in Boston for good.
Acciari played in just 29 games at the NHL level last season, missing a month with a lower-body injury and spending about 10 weeks with the Providence Bruins of the AHL upon returning. He scored five points in 29 games with the Boston Bruins and added a goal in four postseason games against the Senators.
However, Acciari’s true value will never come from his offense. The lack of scoring is the reason the 25-year-old will never elevate beyond a bottom-six role, but he is a hard hitter who brings plenty of energy to every shift.
Acciari also represents a good value for Sweeney against the cap. It’s a far cry from the days of Peter Chiarelli overpaying for veteran bottom-six forwards like Chris Kelly ($3 million AAV) or Rich Peverley ($3.25 million). Sweeney identified a young, inexpensive option for the fourth line who trumps experience with a low price tag that will allow the GM to spend more at positions of higher importance.
The key for Acciari now is to stay healthy. But if he can, the Bruins have at least one solid (and cheap) player to anchor the bottom-six.
Matt Dolloff is a writer/producer for CBSBostonSports.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect that of CBS or 98.5 The Sports Hub. Have a news tip or comment for Matt? Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff and email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.