BOSTON -- Although it took two injuries to Buffalo's forward corps for him to finally crack the lineup, and he seemed destined to return to the press box this week when the Sabres' missing players got healthy, Daniel Paille was still surprised he was traded to Boston on Tuesday.
"A little bit of shock, but also I'm excited at the same time. I'm presented with a new opportunity, a new team, and I'm really looking forward to that," Paille said Wednesday after his first morning skate in a Bruins uniform.
In two games for the Sabres, Paille had one assist for the season. Last season, his goal total dropped from 19 in 2007-08 to 12 in just four fewer games. The Sabres had a logjam on the left wing, but there also were reports the club wasn't satisfied with the forward's intensity and defensive-zone play.
"I thought I started the year, with the preseason and the games that I played, I thought I worked hard and showed the intensity," Paille said.
Paille is expected to make his Bruins debut Wednesday night against Nashville. At the least, he should be able to boost the Bruins' penalty kill, which enters the game ranked 27th in the league.
"I used to penalty kill a lot with Buffalo, and from what my understanding is, it's pretty much similar to what Buffalo does on the penalty kill, so it should be easy to adapt," he said. "And with that, you have to just show desperation; that pretty much overcomes anything."
Coach Claude Julien said he expects Paille to jump into the fray.
"He's got all the attributes to be a good penalty-killer," Julien said. "He's got speed; obviously he's got grit. He's done a good job in Buffalo in that regard. And he's a guy that obviously takes pride in killing penalties and he should help us in that area. We certainly plan on giving him a chance to do that with our team."
The injury to center Marc Savard forced the Bruins to recall Trent Whitfield from Providence (AHL), bringing the total of new Bruins forwards in the lineup to four. General manager Peter Chiarelli explained that Whitfield received the call over top prospect Zach Hamill because the club was looking for a "veteran presence," and Hamill isn't in "call-up mode yet."
Preds piecing together
Boston isn't the only club taking the ice with injury fill-ins. Nashville lost center Jason Arnott to an upper-body injury in its last game, and one of the players it hopes will pick up the slack is Dave Scatchard, whose career with the Bruins consisted of 16 games in the 2005-06 season before he was traded to Phoenix. Scatchard took off last season after playing in just three AHL games the season before. "I've been on a hockey team since I was 4 or 5 years old. When all your buddies are still playing and you're sitting at home, it's not as fun as it could be. So I thought I might as well go back and see if I can play again," he said. Scatchard went to training camp with Vancouver and was released before signing with Nashville.