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 email@example.com.Follow Joe on Twitter at http:twitter.comHackswithHaggs
Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading while knowing that “Saturdays are for the boys” no longer exists once you are married with kids…except during glorious bachelor party weekends, which are few and far between.
*Congrats to Patrick Williams, who was named the Ellery Award winner for his great coverage of all things at the AHL level. Well deserved, Pat!
*A really moving, heartbreaking and also life-affirming tribute from Bobby Ryan to his recently-passed mother after his childhood experience really forged a bond.
*The Tyson Barrie/Colorado Avalanche arbitration case has a chance to get messy, and that may be a very good thing for teams hoping a D-man suddenly becomes available.
*Some great stories about the hockey movies made over the last 30 years including Sudden Death, Mystery Alaska and Slap Shot.
*Kudos to Gabriel Landeskog, who has joined an organization attempting to advise athletes on recovery from concussions after his scary experiences.
*The focus of P.K. Subban’s philanthropy is on the kids, a thing made abundantly clear by his generous pledge to raise $10 million from a Montreal children’s hospital.
*Good piece by FOH (Friend of Haggs) Josh Cooper over at Yahoo! Sports on Murray Craven as a bit of an “Everything Man” for the new Las Vegas expansion franchise.
*For something completely different: what a great American and Patriot looks like, even if the Republicans and Trump don’t seem to think so.
Here are the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading while using “malarkey” in my day-to-day vocabulary as much as possible.
-- Dale Tallon was promoted with the Florida Panthers to accentuate his strengths as a talent evaluator, but maintains that he still has final say on hockey decisions.
-- PHT writer Cam Tucker has another young D-man off the board with the Wild’s Matthew Dumba signing a two year, $5.1 million deal with Minnesota.
-- In the interest of self-promotion, here’s my take on the negotiations between Brad Marchand and the Bruins: There’s a couple of good signs at the outset of negotiations.
-- The Arizona Coyotes are stressing the defensive side of things in a big, big way, and it appears to be part of John Chayka’s master plan.
-- Alex Pietrangelo would be a natural selection to replace David Backes as the next captain of the St. Louis Blues.
-- A moving letter from Sens forward Bobby Ryan to his recently passed mother is up at the Players Tribune website.
-- Chris Kreider has re-signed with the New York Rangers, and plans to get out of his head and onto the score sheet more often.
-- For something completely different: Jerod Mayo will bring a new voice to Tom E. Curran’s Quick Slants program on our very own CSN network.