Bruins need help, and Matt Bartkowski is 'fed up' with himself

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Matt Bartkowski could help the Boston Bruins right now. He's a defenseman, and Boston is generally short on them.

After the preseason Johnny Boychuk trade and injuries to Zdeno Chara (4-6 weeks, knee) and Torey Krug (2-3 fingers), the Bruins' current top six is some combination of Dennis Seidenberg, Dougie Hamilton, Adam McQuaid, Bartkowski, Zach Trotman and call-ups Joe Morrow and David Warsofsky.

There's space in there for Bartkowski, 26, to play a big role. The first problem: In five games, he hasn't been good. Boston controls 50.4 percent of all shot attempts when he's on the ice at even-strength, the worst mark among their defensemen with more than 50 minutes played. They've also been outscored 8-2. None of that bodes well for playing him on, say, a second pair.

Beyond that, Bartkowski was specifically bad Tuesday against the Minnesota Wild. Two of his misplays led directly to Wild goals in their four-goal third-period comeback.

The end result: Neither Bartkowski nor his coach is feeling all that great about the prospect of increased playing time.

He played less than nine minutes against Minnesota. Morrow and Warsofsky should probably get ready.