- James Murphy, Bruins reporter, ESPNBoston.com
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The contract talks between unrestricted free agent-to-be Chris Kelly and the Bruins have hit a stalemate, according to Kelly's agent Pat Morris. Morris told ESPNBoston.com that there has been no dialogue between him and Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli since the Bruins were eliminated from the Stanley Cup playoffs by the Capitals on April 27. The Bruins forward was offered an extension by the team in late February but both parties agreed to wait until the end of the season to start up negotiations. Morris said that he and Kelly are ready and waiting on Chiarelli now.
"We haven't heard from Peter yet so we're just waiting for his call and we'll hopefully get the dialogue going," Morris said Friday. "Chris obviously has a warm spot in his heart for Boston since he won the Cup here and loves this team, so he has made it clear he'd like to stay, but we're also going to have to keep our options open the closer we get to July 1."
Kelly made it clear to the media that he wants to stay in Boston when the team had its final media availability April 27.
“They were talking a bit and we stopped, obviously. I thought it was the best thing for me and for the team, so we could focus on playing. As much you don’t want to let contract stuff become a distraction while it’s going on, it is always in the back of your head,” Kelly said then. “Hopefully my agent and Peter will talk and get something done. I’ve made it clear I like it here and I’m not just telling you that. I really do like it here. Some guys just say that, but everything about Boston has been a pleasant surprise. From the team, the coaching staff, the management all the way down to the city. I didn’t know anything about the city after coming here last year, but my wife and I -- and my family -- have really grown to love it here.”
The 31-year-old forward finished the season with a career-high 20 goals, 19 assists and career-high 39 points. He was acquired by the Bruins from Ottawa in a trade just prior to the 2011 NHL trading deadline and has become one of the team's best two-way forwards, finding a niche at center on the third line.