May 3, 2010, 1:00 PM EDT
When the Boston Bruins signed Miroslav Satan to a contract right after New Year’s this season, it seemed like a desperate team picking up a washed up player. While that may have been a reasonable assumption, the 35-year-old devil pun generator resurrected his career and might just be the Bruins’ most dangerous forward right now.
Satan is currently in a three-way tie for the team lead in playoff points with seven in seven games played. Two of his three goals were game winners, including an enormous OT winner against his former team, the Buffalo Sabres. He has six of those points in his last four games, including three tallies in that same time frame.
Now, before you go too overboard with praise for the wisdom of his signing, consider just how unexpected his output really is. In 17 playoff games during the Pittsburgh Penguin’s Stanley Cup run last year, he only managed six points, which included a goose egg in the 7-game series with Detroit. He hasn’t reached similar totals since his mid-20s (with respective 9, 8 and 13 point outputs) and only in 2000-01 did he have a point per game average like he has now.
Regardless, Satan’s rejuvenation is a prime example of why it’s rarely an awful move to roll the dice on a cheap former-stud. Such a strategy worked out nicely for Maxim Afinogenov (another Buffalo castoff) in Atlanta and plenty of other times over the years.
The question remains: is this just a blip on the radar or did Satan simply cash in on more of a fair opportunity to save his career? It’ll be interesting to see what the Bruins decide to do with the aging winger this summer, for sure.
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