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Steve Montador dealt to Bruins for Petteri Nokelainen

03.04.09 at 1:21 pm ET

The Bruins have traded fourth line forward Petteri Nokelainen — just back from a serious right eye injury — to the Anaheim Ducks for defenseman Steve Montador in a move that provides the B’s with desired depth along the blueline. Montador, a former teammate of Andrew Ference, Stephane Yelle, Chuck Kobasew and Marc Savard with the Calgary Flames teams of the early 2000’s, is enjoying his best season in the NHL and was described by former teammate Ference as the ultimate “character” guy.

The deal gives the Bruins some needed insurance in case injuries strike anyone along the blueline just before or during the playoff run, and the 6-foot-2, 210-pound Montador will produce the kind of strength, spunk and size Boston could use more of headed into some potentially fierce playoff battles. That much was obvious after watching a team with little to no spunk going through the motions against the Flyers on Tuesday night.

The 29-year-old Montador has four goals and 16 assists for the Ducks this season, and will be another Bruins player willing to drop the gloves and scrap — and provide a spark — if the situation presents itself. In fact, Ference said this afternoon that Montador attempted to goad Milan Lucic into a fight when the score got to 3-0 during last Thursday night’s game between the Ducks and Bruins. That’s the kind of fighting spirit that a hockey team can always use more of.

“There’s a couple of us with some history with him,” said Ference, who traveled to Africa with Montador two summers ago for the same Right to Play organization that Zdeno Chara is also involved with. “He’s the kind of guy on the ice that will do anything for the team.  He’ll stick his nose out and take a couple lumps for the team and try to bring some emotion to the team. The guys in the (dressing room) are giving some of the (former) Calgary guys a little bit of ribbing in there, but that’s alright.

“He’s a really good piece,” added Ference.

Will this be the only move for the Bruins before the 3 p.m. NHL trade deadline? As the inimitable Butch Stearns would say, “I’m not sure about that.” So check back with Pucks with Haggs for more details as they come in, and we’ll have all the reaction from Chiarelli and Co. at the Garden around 4:30 pm this afternoon.

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