Haggerty: Kelly should spark some changes


Haggerty: Kelly should spark some changes

By Joe Haggerty

WILMINGTON, Mass. For those disappointed in the Chris Kelly acquisition, heres a simple couple words of advice: Dont be.The Bruins had an extra second-round pick floating around after trading Chuck Kobasew to the Minnesota Wild last season, and it was clear the pick wasnt going to be at the top of the round given Minnesotas surge over the last few months.So the B's dealt their pick and held onto the Wild selection that will be a bit higher in the round, and the Bs have done something to stabilize the third center spot that has been a problem ever since Marc Savard went down for the season with his concussion. Kellys arrival means the Bruins get a little more difficult to play against, and that pieces are being set in motion by Bruins coach Claude Julien and general manager Peter Chiarelli once the former Senators center arrives in the U.S. after work visa issues. Tyler Seguin will see an immediate impact from Kellys arrival, as hes been displaced as the third-line center on the Boston roster, and it appears that the 19-year-old might again be headed to a healthy scratch if things dont change.That leads to Blake Wheeler, who has been discussed in trade talks with several teams and figures to be one of the central pieces moved in a deal for a defenseman now that the Bruins have secured an additional forward. Wheeler hasnt been the same player over the last six weeks after showing some encouraging signs of intermittent physicality and snarl at the beginning of the season, and sources indicate he may be the eventual odd man out of Boston once the Bs make a deal.Either way the Bruins couldnt survive down the stretch and into the playoffs if they were playing with a top three center that they were hesitant to put on the ice, and felt was a defensive and offensive liability when he was out there. That's no fault of a young player trying to figure things out with frenetic NHL action flying all around, but its a reality for a hockey team thats got aspirations to move beyond the second round of the Stanley Cup playoffs.Kelly isnt the answer, but hes part of solving a problem that needed to be closed before the playoff bullets started flying.
Joe Haggerty can be reached at jhaggerty@comcastsportsnet.com.Follow Joe on Twitter at http:twitter.comHackswithHaggs

Morning Skate: Former PC coach Army on Avs' rough year

Morning Skate: Former PC coach Army on Avs' rough year

Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading, while celebrating the 40th Anniversary of Star Wars being released today. Amazing that the power and influence of the best movie franchise in cinematic history are just as strong today as it was four decades ago. I still remember my first time seeing it as a very little kid with my parents at the dearly departed Starlight Drive-In in North Reading.

*Good guy and recently fired Colorado Avalanche assistant coach Tim Army talks about a rough past season with the Avs, and some of the difficulties they faced in a truly terrible season. The former Providence College head coach and good hockey man shouldn’t have much trouble finding his next gig.

*A great move by the Arizona Coyotes, who have hired former Bruins forward Craig Cunningham as a pro scout after his awful medical situation last season that resulted in his leg getting amputated. Cunningham is a hard worker and a hockey lifer, and that’s exactly the kind of traits that the best scouts have in huge amounts.

*The New Jersey Devils have fired a number of employees after a rough season, including a groundbreaking radio analyst.

*With the ultra-competitive demand for an edge in NHL player development, teams are beginning to look to Europe for more and more diamonds in the rough. The Bruins tried that with Joonas Kemppainen, but it didn’t work out so well.

*One of the real big advantages of the Nashville Predators getting to the Stanley Cup Final for the first time is a national spotlight getting flashed on PK Subban, who shows off his personality in a rare ESPN interview of a hockey player featured on the network's magazine show.

*Ryan Johansen isn’t done talking smack to Ryan Kesler after the Predators prevailed over the Ducks, and it’s some delicious playoff hatred.

*Is the NHL ready to draft another goaltender with the last name DiPietro in the first round? Inquiring minds want to know, but I’d recommend the New York Islanders take a pass just in the name of avoiding a repeat of some bad history for them.

*Taylor Hall sounds pretty bitter about the whole “Edmonton Oilers getting into the playoff without him” thing, doesn’t he?

*For something completely different: As mentioned above, it’s a milestone birthday for the Star Wars franchise hitting 40 years old today. Boy, this Boston Globe movie review was right on the money back in 1977.