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

Wednesday, Oct. 26: Crosby scores in season debut


Wednesday, Oct. 26: Crosby scores in season debut

Here are all the hockey links from around the world, and what I’m reading while having a deep thought while watching commercials: how lost in your own quirkiness do you have to be to name your kid Beowulf?

*The Predators had a nasty case of food poisoning hit their team, and Adam Vingan has all the gory details.

*A great chat with FOH (Friend of Haggs) Jimmy Murphy and the legendary Russ Conway about the legendary Bobby Orr.

*Martin Biron says that Frederik Andersen looks like a much different player now with Toronto than he did with the Anaheim Ducks last season.

*An observation from a Tuesday with 1,000 decisions is that Dallas Stars head coach Lindy Ruff has a really tough job.

*As mentioned above, Toronto Maple Leafs goalie Frederik Andersen is having a tough time in his new locale, and there may be several reasons why.

*An early Christmas present for Tampa Bay Lightning goaltender Ben Bishop would be his two front teeth.

*Pro Hockey Talk has Sidney Crosby returning on Tuesday night, and immediately leading the Penguins in a balanced attack.  

*For something completely different: A. Sherrod Blakely has his Celtics preview, and says it’s a new year with tons of new expectations for the Men in Green.

Backes out at least two more games (and likely longer) after elbow procedure


Backes out at least two more games (and likely longer) after elbow procedure

The Bruins look like they’ll be without gritty veteran forward David Backes for at least the next couple of games, and probably more like the next couple of weeks.

It was announced that the gritty Bruins forward underwent a procedure on Monday remove the olecranon bursa from his elbow, and that “his condition will be updated after the weekend.” The procedure is commonly performed when bursitis in the elbow becomes an untenable, and seems more like an injury that worsens over time rather than anything that happened in a particular game this season.

Backes’ effectiveness did seem to be impacted after he got into a fight with Nazem Kadri in the second game of the season in Toronto, but it’s unknown if there’s any connection between that sequence and the forward’s elbow issues. According to the AAOS (American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons) website, it may take “10-14 days” for the skin to heal following the procedure, and three-to-four weeks before a doctor would clear the average person to resume normal activity.

The 32-year-old Backes is off to a good start for the Bruins with two goals and four points in five games prior to missing Tuesday night’s loss to the Minnesota Wild, and his absence makes an already-thin Bruins forward group smaller, softer and much less dangerous. With Backes on the shelf for at least the next two games against the Rangers and Detroit Red Wings, the Bruins have recalled young center Austin Czarnik after his short stint with the Providence Bruins.