Ward move not done with Kessel in mind

Chiarelli

Chiarelli

Boston Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli said today during a conference call after his trade of Aaron Ward to Carolina for Patrick Eaves and a fourth-round pick that the deal was not done to clear cap space for restricted free agent Phil Kessel but more because he’s “looking at another defenseman.”

Chiarelli would not say whether that player would come to Boston via trade or free agency. In a follow-up answer, he said he “would expect to add a defenseman.”

As for Kessel, Chiarelli continued to hold the line by stressing that he will match any offer sheets presented to the winger and then he wants to retain Kessel’s services.

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