Mark Recchi Reflects On His Final Season In Boston

Mark Recchi will certainly be missed in Boston, but being able to celebrate the championship on Thursday with his teammates was quite special - according to the former Assistant Captain!

By NoontimeSports.com 

BOSTON, MA – Thursday was an exciting evening at the TD Garden, as Boston Bruins fans, as well as the team celebrated their most recent accomplishment – a Stanley Cup Championship.

Former Assistant Captain, Mark Recchi returned to the Garden to celebrate with his former teammates, as well as spoke with reporters after the pre-game festivities about his future plans, as well as celebrating the team’s sixth championship.

Here are some of the highlights from his interview with the media, courtesy of the Boston Bruins public relations staff:

On what he was feeling during the pregame ceremony…

“Just a lot of emotions, really. It was great to get that last opportunity to go on the ice with the guys and go on the ice, period, as an NHL player. When you do it at the end, I wasn’t really thinking about it and [knowing] this was going to be it. These last couple days have been hard. It was an exciting day, but it was a sad day, too, at the same time. But it was so great to be out there with the guys. I had no idea that was coming, the jacket thing, so it got me pretty choked up. I love the guys, and they mean the world to me, and it was a great experience, to be here with them for that.”  

On having members of the 1971-1972 team here for the ceremony…

“That’s incredible, knowing Chief [Johnny Bucyk] and Bobby [Orr] personally and what great guys they are and how much they wanted to see us win as well. It’s been a long time, and I think they’re glad to share the Stanley Cup with some other people and excited about it. They were our biggest supporters all year, and it’s great to have all those guys out there and come and pass it on to the ’11 team.”

On why, out of his whole career, last season and winning the cup was extra special…

“Obviously, they’re all special in their own way, but I came back for one reason to play, and that was the get that last shot at winning again. The group of guys, from the day we went to Vermont, you could see their commitment and the special bond we had as a group right off the get-go. Any important game that we needed, we won because the guys were totally committed. It happened all year, and we stuck together, and to finish on top with this group, it really did mean the world to me. These guys are unbelievable people, and I have lifelong friends now. It’s a special time, and to end your career on something that special with a group of guys that you truly do love and want to be around, it’s amazing.”

On if the pregame ceremony gave him chills…

“Absolutely. I never got a chance to do Carolina, and in Pittsburgh, obviously I was there, but I never got a chance in Carolina. Like I said, it was the last time I’ll be on the ice as a NHL player and be around my teammates in that aspect at least. To be on the ice with them and be in Boston with the crowd – the reaction to us winning the Stanley Cup has been absolutely amazing what this city has, how much they’ve embraced it and enjoyed it. It’s a special time, and I was glad I was able to share it with Boston fans and be a part of it on the ice, too.”

On what’s next for him…

“I’m coaching my son, working out here and there, drink a lot of win. Not a whole lot right now. I might do a little bit of TV – the second half of the year, I might do a little bit of TV just to keep myself in the game, and at some point I want to get into management, so I want to do that. Between juniors and now it’s been 26 years of going at it, and I need to take a break and hang out with my kids.”   

The Big Bad Bruins are … BACK!

After Monday's game against the Canucks, it's fair to say that the "Big Bad Bruins" are back!

By Matt Noonan 

After watching the Stanley Cup Finals on Monday, I finally came to a consensus on Tuesday morning … the “Big Bad Bruins” have officially returned to Boston.

The city is excited and why shouldn’t it be? The Bruins pounded the Canucks on Monday and have officially climbed back into the series. Although, while Vancouver indeed leads Boston, two games to one, I think it’s fair to say that no one care about the score at this moment, right?

The Big Bad Bruins were your mother and father’s team, but last night, they emulated the stories of the franchise’s past, as Milan Lucic, Mark Recchi and Shawn Thornton reminded us of the glory days and helped the team score eight goals in 60-minutes. Yep, they scored eight points and let’s just say it was wicked awesome.

Yet, why was Game 3 of the Stanley Cup so awesome? Well, here are a few reasons.

Vancouver’s goaltender Roberto Luongo refused to leave his cage after allowing five goals. The Sedin brother’s complained and whined, while Ryan Kessler got his hands dirty with Zdeno Chara and Thornton. Also, various Bruins players constantly harassed Alex Burrows and Max Lapierre all night and yes, both guys were quite relieved once the final horn sounded.

Again, this was the second coming of the Bruins of the ‘70’s. They hit their opponent. They slammed the Canucks into the board and yep, they walloped Vancouver.

Game 4, which will be played on Wednesday at the TD Garden should be exciting, especially since every Bostonian and New Englander is craving more Bruins hockey. The spirit of hockey is alive, but now, all that we need is a parade and Stanley Cup trophy to prove that Black and Gold hockey has officially returned to Massachusetts.

Bruins Beat Up Canucks in Game 3, 8-1

The Bruins outplayed the Canucks on Monday and Tim Thomas denied 40-of-41 shots between the pipes.

By Brian Willwerth 

The Bruins lost one of their star players just five minutes into Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Finals. They emphatically made sure they would not lose the game on their home ice.

Boston’s offense erupted in an 8-1 victory over the Vancouver Canucks Monday night at TD Garden. The Bruins cut Vancouver’s lead in the series to 2-1 – a series that’s starting to see bad blood boil over between the two teams.

The play that everyone’s talking about happened five minutes into the game.  Aaron Rome leveled Nathan Horton near the blue line. Horton was down on the ice for several minutes, and had to be helped off the ice on a stretcher. Rome got a major penalty for interference, and a game misconduct. Horton ended up in the hospital. Word came near the end of the first period that he did have movement in all of his extremities.

The Bruins and their fans viewed that as a cheap shot. And did it ever fire up the home team.

The Bruins scored the first goal of the game just eleven seconds into the second period. Andrew Ference’s shot from the point found its way through traffic, and past Roberto Luongo, to give Boston a 1-0 lead.

Four minutes later, the Bruins added to their lead on the power play. Mark Recchi’s pass went off Vancouver’s Ryan Kesler’s stick and past Luongo to make it 2-0.

Then Brad Marchand scored what may have been the prettiest goal of the series.  He stole the puck at center-ice, passed it off the boards to himself, broke in on goal and lifted it over a fallen Luongo to give the Bruins a 3-0 lead. And to top it all off, it was a shorthanded goal to boot.

The scoring didn’t stop there. David Krejci picked up the rebound of a Michael Ryder shot and knocked it past Luongo for the Bruins’ fourth goal of the period.

Boston got its second shorthanded goal of the game in the third period, courtesy of Daniel Paille. That made it 5-0. After Jannik Hansen spoiled the shutout, the Bruins scored three more goals within a 1:50 span. Recchi, Chris Kelly and Michael Ryder got into the act during that time.

And then, there was Tim Thomas. He was sensational once again. He stopped 40-of-41 Vancouver shots. Many of his saves were of the spectacular variety. Yes, we’ve said this before about him.

Game 4 is Wednesday night at TD Garden. Will there be any discipline stemming from Rome’s hit on Horton? That’s up to the NHL to decide. One thing is certain: we have ourselves a series.

Bruins Fans Should Not Panic

It should be an exciting Game 3 on Monday, but should Bruins fans be worried?

By Matt Noonan 

Here we go again, another Boston team hopelessly, desperately trying to comeback from a 0-2 hole, but really, can they do it? Does Boston have enough energy left in their tank to cheer the Bruins onto victory?

We all know the last time the Bruins were crowned champions of the National Hockey League was in 1972. America was not at war with Afghanistan or Iraq and Barack Obama wasn’t the president of the United States, but instead, Richard “Tricky Dick” Nixon was calling the shots from the White House.

Yet, rather than go back in time and recollect about America in the 1970’s, let’s at least consider the obvious or what we already know about this particular Boston Bruins team.

First, they’re resilient or at least, we think they are, right?

They’ve overcome various deficits over the past year, such as when they lost two back-to-back games against Montreal in April. The Bruins responded by winning two games in Montreal’s barn and then finished off the Habs in game seven at the TD Garden.

They also overcame a rocky start against the Tampa Bay Lighting and eventually won the Eastern Conference crown in seven games too.

Second, they have a decent goaltender by the name of Tim Thomas. He’s the leader of the Black and Gold and certainly has been the reason why Boston has experienced a great deal of success in the postseason. He’s made some highlight reel saves, as well as amazed even the most casual fan and again, he’s why the Bruins are in the Stanley Cup Finals.

The Bruins also have quality goal scorers and defenseman. Players like Nathan Horton and Milan Lucic have been very important puzzle pieces for this offense, while Mark Recchi, Dennis Seidenberg and Zdeno Chara have anchored a defense, especially on the power play. Also, Tyler Seguin has left our jaws on the floor with his “can’t-miss” moves.

Do I need to continue with more names?

All in all, this is a quality Bruins team. They may not be an exact replicate of Vancouver, but again, they’re a team that certainly can overcome anything.

Boston sports fans never give up on their teams; so expect the Black and Gold faithful to be ready to cheer on their hometown Bruins. Everyone in the Hub wants the Cup, so a little electricity at the Garden might help Boston climb back in the series.

Alex Burrows Helps Vancouver Secure 2-0 Series Lead Against Boston

Alex Burrows scored two goals, as well as assisted one of his teammates in Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Finals!

By Matt Noonan 

After Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Finals, Vancouver’s Alex Burrows officially joined the likes of Alex Rodriguez, Peyton Manning and Kobe Bryant, yet, why was he chosen to be on the “Boston sports-fan hate list?” Well that’s because he chomped on Patrice Bergeron’s hand this past Wednesday and yep, he wasn’t fined or suspended by the league.

The NHL reviewed the play and felt that Burrow’s actions were incredibly normal, but I bet league commissioner Gary Bettman is saying to himself, “I’m glad I didn’t have Colin Campbell’s replacement suspend him” because Burrows is the reason why the Canucks are headed back to Boston with a 2-0 series lead.

Vancouver kicked-off Game 2 with a first period goal at 12:12, as Christopher Higgins and Sami Salo set up Burrows for his eighth playoff goal, which sparked the Canucks offense and extreme die-hards, (yep, go ahead blue and green fans, start cheering).

After his quick strike, the Rogers Arena watched the Bruins score their first Stanley Cup points since their 1990 series against the Edmonton Oilers, as Milan Lucic and Mark Recchi chipped in goals two minutes apart during the second period to give Boston their first lead of the series.

In the third period, Tim Thomas continued to his playoff excellence, but his magic wore off once Burrows and Alexander Edler set up Daniel Sedin for Vancouver’s second goal of the contest, which propelled the game into overtime.

After a third intermission, Vancouver rushed onto the ice determined to win and yep, they did and it only took 11-seconds. Burrows raced down the left wing and forced Thomas out of his crease. The Bruins goaltender went flying to his right while Burrows wrapped himself around Boston’s net and forced a backhander past Zdeno Chara to secure the Canucks 14th win of the 2011 postseason.

With the win, Vancouver is now two games away from winning their first ever Stanley Cup trophy and yes, it would be exciting to see a Canadian team win the award, especially since it hasn’t happened for 18-years, but for Boston, this is just another chapter in their miserable history. The Bruins have come so far and now, they’re starring at a 0-2 hole. They need to rally or do something because otherwise, they’ll have to make history and win four games in a row, which won’t be enjoyable, right?

Game 3 is slated for Monday evening at the TD Garden and I’m sure the Black and Gold supporters will be ready to cheer on their local hero’s.