BOSTON (CBS) — Don Sweeney made up for a rather disappointing draft weekend by adding a pair of talented forwards to the Boston roster last week.
The team introduced Matt Beleskey and Jimmy Hayes on Tuesday, with both players referring to themselves as “power forwards” eager to make their mark on their new team. CSNNE’s Joe Haggerty joined Toucher & Rich on Wednesday (with Dan Roche in for Fred) to break down where the two newest Bruins will fit with the team, saying both play the tough style Sweeney and president Cam Neely want out of the club.READ MORE: 9 Injured At Back Bay MBTA Station After Escalator Malfunction
“It’s more about body checks and throwing himself in on a forecheck,” Haggerty said of Beleskey, who scored a career-high 22 goals with Anaheim last season. “[Bruins fans] saw what he did during the playoffs when he could be a wrecking ball at times with defensemen and cause turnovers, really impact the game. He’s not nearly as big as Milan Lucic and does not consistently have the same kind of effect as Lucic did when he put hits on defensemen, but that’s a part of his game — playing with that power, aggressiveness and physicality.”
As for 6-foot-6 Hayes, Haggerty said he’s now the biggest forward on the Bruins and isn’t afraid to use his size to do the dirty work in front of the net.
“He knows how to carve out space for himself in front of the net. He will go to the front and use his big body to redirect pucks, get rebounds and distract goalies. They didn’t have enough players that were doing that last year,” said Haggs. “These guys aren’t going to score 30 goals tomorrow, but they are going to help the team and they were effective rebounds for Don Sweeney after some tough days at the draft.”READ MORE: First Afghan Refugees Arrive In Massachusetts
Haggerty expects Beleskey to play on Boston’s top line with David Krejci and David Pastrnak, while Hayes will play on the third line with Ryan Spooner and Loui Eriksson (with Patrice Bergeron-Brad Marchand-Brett Connolly on the second line).
“If you look at those lines, from top to bottom there is some offensive talent in there and there is some reason for Bruins fans to be a little more optimistic they’ll score more goals than last year. Those are three lines that are pretty well-balanced,” said Haggerty. “I’m interested to see how Beleskey will respond if put on a line with Krejci and Pastrnak.
“There are a lot of different options that Claude Julien has heading into camp that should be fun to watch.”
Haggerty also touches on Boston’s glaring need on the blue line, and how Sweeney can address it before the start of the season.MORE NEWS: Gas Leak In Lawrence Forces More Than 100 People Out Of Nearby Buildings