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Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Bruins introduce new GM

BOSTON (AP) -- Peter Chiarelli, introduced Wednesday as the new general manager of the Boston Bruins, said he wants to introduce "a new fresh culture" to the struggling organization.

"I want players to want to play here," Chiarelli said Wednesday at his first news conference since being hired Friday. "I want players to want to stay here."

Chiarelli, who spent the past two years as assistant general manager of the Ottawa Senators, succeeds Mike O'Connell, who was fired March 25 with the Bruins on their way to their third non-playoff season in the past six years.

Under an agreement with Ottawa and NHL commissioner Gary Bettman, Chiarelli officially takes over as GM on July 15 but he is permitted to have input into Bruins' decisions in the meantime.

Bruins executive vice-president Charlie Jacobs has said Chiarelli will determine whether coach Mike Sullivan remains for a third season. Chiarelli said his first priority is to meet with Sullivan.

"I don't know Mike. I've heard good things about him," Chiarelli said.

Chiarelli, a former captain of the Harvard hockey team, signed a four-year contract.

To get Chiarelli, the Bruins agreed to send the Senators a conditional pick in the 2007 draft or beyond.

The 41-year-old Chiarelli takes over a Boston team that has one playoff series victory in 10 seasons and this season traded its top scorer, Joe Thornton, and most exciting player, Sergei Samsonov.

Chiarelli, a native of Ottawa, was a player agent before joining the Senators in 1999 as director of legal relations. He had 21 goals and 49 points in 109 games at Harvard, then played one year in Europe.



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