Chris Kelly was drafted 94th overall by the Ottawa Senators in the 1999 NHL Entry Draft. At the major junior level, he had played for the Sudbury Wolves and London Knights. In 1998-1999, Kelly registered his OHL personal best with 36 goals. He also played for the Bobby Orr team in the mid-season of the CHL Top Prospects Game. When Kelly was in the playoffs, he scored 26 points in only 25 games as the London Knights reached the OHL Final.
In 2004-2005, Kelly had finished 5th in the American Leagues with a +30 plus/minus rating. He also finished 5th on the Binghamton Senators with 60 points as the team finished fourth overall in standings. When Kelly was a pro rookie in 2001-2002, he helped the Grand Rapids Griffins finish fourth in the AHL.
Kelly finally played for the Ottawa Senators in 2003-2004, when he played four games. His first full season in the NHL was in 2005-2006. He frequently plays on a line with Antoine Vermette and Chris Neil. Kelly is also one of the team's best penalty killers, usually playing with Vermette and Mike Fisher on the penalty kill.
Kelly is a skinny player that had a good rookie season. He is a clever checking center and a versatile two-way forward, leading to his being used mainly in a defensive capacity. Kelly will continue to look for his place in the NHL and will continue to help his team win.