Originally posted on Pro Sports Daily  |  Last updated 11/7/13
In case anybody was wondering, Zdeno Chara detests the idea that he’s a minus player one month into the season. The debate can go on until the cows come home about the reasons why he's a minus player, and the overall merits of the plus/minus stat, but the Bruins captain is a minus-1 for the season after 14 games. To put that in perspective, Chara was a plus-80 over the last three years with identical plus-33 marks in each of his last two full NHL seasons in 2010-11 and 2011-12. “It bothers me,” said Chara. “I don’t like to be a minus player, and I hate to be in that column. For sure it’s part of the game that I’m looking to improve, so we have to go for it. I’m not sure if I could pinpoint one thing. When it’s just a minus-1, you’re not playing terribly badly. "But I think we think we’re all better [players] than we are in plus/minus. We just need to find a way to score more goals, and prevent other teams from scoring more. Sometimes you end up on the ice when you score more goals, and sometimes you’re not. Sometimes you end up on the ice when good things are happening, and sometimes you’re out there when the puck ends up in the back of your net. It’s just the way it is.” The minus-1 is next to Chara’s name for a couple of different reasons. The Bruins offense hasn’t been stellar to start the season, clearly a factor in the lackluster total. Some of it is that Chara's also been a victim of circumstance, as he was on Long Island when he was on the ice for a goal against as the lone last defender when Brad Marchand and Dougie Hamilton had both blown the coverage. “I don’t think anybody’s used to seeing [Chara] there [in the minus]," coach Claude Julien said. "He’s usually a pretty high plus player, but sometimes you take stats for what they’re worth; it could be circumstances. I prefer looking at video, and looking at ‘Is he really that responsible for those goals against, or does he happen to be on the ice when those kinds of mistakes are made?'
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