Chiarelli looking to add winger

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Chiarelli looking to add winger

Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli saw enough of his third and fourth lines getting pounded around by the bottom-six likes of Mike Knuble, Joel Ward, Jason Chimera and Jay Beagle during their playoff series vs. the Capitals to detect an area of roster-building that might need to be addressed.

While it may not result in the addition of Zach Parise or Rich Nash as some waving Black and Gold pompoms would certainly be clamoring for, Chiarelli said that changes should be expected for a current roster of players that couldnt get out of the first round this season.

The Bruins have a bevy of young players ready to contribute as soon as next season: Ryan Spooner, Jared Knight and Dougie Hamilton are the biggest names that could be ready to inject some youth and enthusiasm. Chiarelli isnt going to touch those players as they develop naturally within Bostons system, but some turnover appears to be a certainty on the big Bs roster.

Youve seen some guys that are going to challenge but on the major change front, Im not looking at doing anything on that front, said Chiarelli. But I would like to add some pieces.

While the Bs GM made certain to assure that it didnt mean the end of days in a Bruins uniform for players like Benoit Pouliot or Jordan Caron, Chiarelli said a top-nine winger is at the top of his offseason shopping cart. It isnt necessarily a player to replace Nathan Horton that Chiarelli is looking for, but instead a more effective, offensively dangerous piece that plays a little heavier a la Michael Ryder two years ago.

We obviously have some guys to consider whether we sign them or not. From the makeover perspective, certainly were not going to do anything to makeover this team, said Chiarelli. You hear me talk about the parity in this league and our first round loss in seven games this year could be another Stanley Cup Final appearance next year its that close. You saw the number of teams in the West you kind of see the new four teams in the West and you see some different teams in the East so you just have to be prepared.

Id like to maybe look at a forward to bolster our top nine, doesnt mean Im not going to look at signing Pouliot. It doesnt mean were not going to consider Caron up there. I just want to look at the trade market and the free agent market.

There are no names at the forefront so soon after the season has concluded to put at the top of Chiarellis shopping list, but theres little doubting that changes are coming for the soon-to-be-no-longer reigning Cup champion Boston Bruins.

Backes: Bruins were ‘wounded’ after ugly Detroit loss

Backes: Bruins were ‘wounded’ after ugly Detroit loss

BRIGHTON, Mass – It certainly sounded like there were some things that made the Wednesday night loss in Detroit a little different for the Bruins.

The Bruins media corps conducted postgame interviews in the hallway rather than in the visiting dressing room after what must have been a combustible atmosphere immediately following the shootout defeat. 

There was also evidence of anger in the visitor’s dressing room at Joe Louis Arena, according to reports, with a door off its hinges when the media was able to get a look inside the dressing room area.

David Backes confirmed something was different about the loss after blowing a pair of three-goal leads, and failing to follow up their dreadful no-show vs. the Islanders with a winning performance against another bad team in Detroit. The B’s forward said the plane ride home from Detroit was solemn and quiet, and that it was clear the Bruins team was “wounded” after a crushing loss.

“Both [losses] can be great lessons if we learn from it, and neither was very enjoyable. That was probably the quietest I think our guys were all year on that plane ride home from Detroit,” said Backes. “To me, that’s a great sign that it hit us in the heart, and it hit us where it really mattered. We’re thinking about how we can turn the tide and thinking about we can be victorious the next time out.

“We had the lead, and in a lot of instances you’re expecting, as you should, to come out of there with two points. We’re at the time in the season where wins need to be garnered and taken home.

“There were a lot of aspects where we should have grabbed the game back. When you feel like you’ve had a lot of opportunities to take the game and you don’t do it, it’s not a good feeling. I was reflecting on that during a very quiet team plane ride back from Detroit, and it seemed pretty clear that the whole team was feeling wounded. I think it’s a good sign that guys were feeling that way, and that means they’re going to do everything in their power to not have that feeling again.”

The words are encouraging from a 32-year-old natural leader in Backes, who has seen good times and bad as captain of the St. Louis Blues in his 10-year NHL career. But the proof is ultimately on the ice where the Bruins have games against the Blackhawks and Penguins coming up and face some very stiff tests coming off a couple of losses against the worst teams in the East that exposed Black and Gold fragility at this point in the season. 


 

After knee injury, Beleskey set to return for Bruins vs. Blackhawks

After knee injury, Beleskey set to return for Bruins vs. Blackhawks

BRIGHTON, Mass – The Bruins, looking for a spark after terrible, back-to-back losses to the New York Islanders and Detroit Red Wings, are hoping the return of Matt Beleskey from a knee injury can help provide the inspiration. 

The blue-collar left winger has missed the past 23 games with a torn MCL in his right knee suffered in early December against the Buffalo Sabres, but now he’s easing back into the lineup on the fourth line in Friday night’s showdown with the Chicago Blackhawks.

Beleskey was skating with Dominic Moore and Austin Czarnik on the fourth line at morning skate at Warrior Ice Arena and should be expected to throw a few hard hits and play with some intensity in his return.

“I’m ready to go and excited to get back out there,” said Beleskey, who has been skating with the team for roughly a week after giving the knee sufficient time to heal. “I’ve just got to keep it simple and do what I do well: Be hard on pucks, take the body and just try and find your groove. You don’t want to expect too much in your first game back, but you just want to be able to contribute.

“’I’ve been saving [the pent-up energy] for a while, so I’m ready to get back out there and hopefully provide a spark for us.”

The Beleskey return also provides the player with a bit of a reset button after a slow start to the season that saw him with two goals and five points along with a minus-6 rating in 24 games played for the Black and Gold prior to his injury. Here are the projected line combos and D-pairs against the Blackhawks based on morning skate today:

Marchand-Bergeron-Vatrano

Schaller-Krejci-Pastrnak

Spooner-Nash-Backes/Hayes

Beleskey/Blidh-Moore-Czarnik

 

Chara-Carlo

Krug-McQuaid

Morrow-Liles

 

Rask