BOSTON -- When the Sharks face the Big Bad Bruins on Thursday night, San Jose is likely to have a little extra bad of its own in the lineup.
Forward Mike Brown practiced with his new teammates for the first time Wednesday, less than 48 hours after being acquired from the Edmonton Oilers for a fourth-round 2014 draft pick.
And while there was talk of the 28-year-old veteran's speed and ability to kill penalties, Brown's résumé also includes 72 NHL fights since he entered the league in 2008.
"Mike Brown obviously has a reputation of being physical and taking care of his teammates," Sharks coach Todd McLellan said. "We don't expect him to change his game. He does bring that element."
But, the coach also pointed out, if Brown didn't have the ability to play the fast style of hockey the Sharks have used to carve out the NHL's best record, he might not have been a good fit.
Sharks general manager Doug Wilson said he brought Brown in because of the long-term injuries to Raffi Torres and Adam Burish. And Brown knows he has multiple roles -- most of them high-energy and physical.
"I'm going to get in on the forecheck, I'm going to play the body every chance I get -- crash the net, take the puck to the net, kill penalties if need be, block shots," Brown said. "And if they need a fight, I'm there to change momentum or back up my teammates."
One of Brown's teammates already knows him pretty well as he and Tommy Wingels grew up about five minutes from each other in suburban Chicago. Though Wingels is three years younger, they came up through the same youth hockey organizations with some of the same coaches.
"He'll help our team," said Wingels, who has skated with Brown over the past few summers.
Sporting his trademark mustache that he will shave and regrow for the annual November charity drive, Brown said he was surprised by the trade, but then realized he was going from the last-place team in the Pacific Division to the first-place team.
"It's always a shock to leave a team," he said, "but on the other side, you've got to think positive of the team you're going to, and that's what I did right away."
Though Brown has fought Scott Nichol and Ben Eager when they were with the Sharks, none of his 72 bouts have come against his new teammates. But, he said, that never has proved to be a problem, and this is his fifth NHL team.
"I've never really found it awkward," Brown said. "Actually, the time I got traded from Vancouver to Anaheim, I think there was about eight guys on that team that I had fought. It was fine. It was almost better as we all had respect for each other."
Brown practiced on the fourth line Wednesday, but McLellan did not say whom he might replace.
Boyle has been recovering from an unspecified upper body injury suffered Oct. 15 when he was illegally driven into the boards by St. Louis Blues forward Maxim Lapierre.
Though Boyle was not placed on injured reserve until Monday night, he would be eligible to play because it was done retroactive to the injury.
That sets up a battle of the brothers as Sharks forward Freddie Hamilton is set to replace Burns for a second game on a line with Joe Thornton and Tomas Hertl. Hamilton's younger brother, Dougie, is in his second season as a Boston defenseman, and their parents are expected to be in TD Garden for the game.
BRUCE BENNETT/GETTY IMAGES
Mike Brown probably will make his Sharks debut against the Bruins.
Sharks (8-0-1) at Boston
(6-2-0), 4 p.m. CSNCA