Friday, September 18, 2009

State of the Bruins

BOSTON – The annual “State of the Bruins” town hall meeting for Boston Bruins season ticket holders was held last night at the TD Garden, with about 2,700-plus season ticket holders in attendance. And while the regular season doesn’t start for 13 days when the Black and Gold face the Washington Capitals, fans still showed a lot of enthusiasm for this club, just like they started to last season.

Andy Brickley, Bruins color commentator for NESN, was the Master of Ceremonies for the event, while the panel included players Milan Lucic, Patrice Bergeron and Derek Morris, head coach Claude Julien, general manager Peter Chiarelli, Vice President and former Bruin Cam Neely, and of course owner Jeremy Jacobs and principal owner and Jeremy’s son Charlie.

Fans got a chance to have their own question and answer period, and some of the questions were quite fascinating to say the least. Here are a few noteworthy questions from the event.

One young fan asked: “If you were to play for any other team, who would it be?” (Directed to all the players)

Here were the answers:

“No other team,” said Lucic, which got a standing ovation from the crowd.

“I think I got the same answer there,” Bergeron responded.

But perhaps the best answer came from the newcomer. “I’ve played for all the others,” Morris jokingly said, referencing to his stints at Calgary, Colorado, Phoenix and New York Rangers in his previous 11 seasons.

Another fan asked Lucic about how he was going to top this hit against the Toronto Maple Leafs:

The Popular Bruin Replied: “I guess I’ll have to break two glasses to top that.” Again, Lucic got a big ovation with that response.

While the players were enjoying themselves with the q & a, there were also a few questions directed towards the management. Chiarelli, in particular, was asked about the Phil Kessel saga and some of the other roster decisions he made during the offseason.

The biggest question still remains, and Chiarelli was asked, “How are you going to replace those 36 goals (recorded by Kessel) from last year?”

“There are players who can pick up the slack,” noted Chiarelli. Let’s not forget Marco Sturm is coming back from injury too and Blake Wheeler, David Krejci (more on his presence later), Chuck Kobasew and Ryder are contributors to the goal-scoring department.

Regarding the negotiations with Kessel, Chiarelli said, “It’s unfortunate that we haven’t been able to sign him. We can’t lose sight of the balance you have on this current team. Phil is a good person and a good player. We’ll see how it resolves itself.”

This was also the night of the unveiling of the Bruins Winter Classic jerseys. Krejci was there to display the jersey—not before snow fell from the top of the Garden however—which is currently in the presale stages.

The jersey itself was introuduced and designed by Neely, where the original colors of brown and gold will return, and the spoked B is a combination of the logos from their five Stanley Cup victories in 1929, 1939, 1941, 1970 and 1972.

Photos by Steve Babino


Post-Event Talk

With one of the greatest hockey play-by-play announcers of all time passing away earlier this week in Fred Cusick, many of the Bruins staff released a statement regarding the late Cusick. Here’s what Neely had to say about the late great Bruins play-by-play broadcasters last night.

“He was a great guy,” Neely said. “I know I didn’t get to listen to him call all the games while I was here, but when I was injured and the team was on the road, he was one of those people who was able to call a great hockey game. He was a great guy outside of the organization too and he’ll be missed.”

With the trade talks surrounding Kessel—with Nashville and Toronto rumored recently to be Kessel’s potential landing spots—some might think this saga will come to a close sometime soon. But this was the answer from Chiarelli when asked about Kessel last night.

“Is there anything imminent? Yes possibly,” said Chiarelli who then went on to say, “Possibly not.”

No comments:

Post a Comment