As a life-long Bruins fan, I’ve seen pretty much everything. Most of it, I wish I hadn’t! Over the last year or two things have changed, though. But lets revisit some of bad first.
My first real memories of the Bruins were in the early to mid eighties. Some good teams, but not great. Always made the playoffs, always bowed out early. As we approached the end of the decade there was reason for hope.
The Bruins had one of the most talented teams in the league and actually made a cup final in ’88. Of course we all know how that turned out!
The 90′s started the same way the 80′s ended: a loss in the cup finals to the Oilers. Then everyone got old, Harry Sinden became more stingy with Jacobs money (if you can believe that), Cam Neely’s knees finally gave out, and Bourque was granted his trade request. A revolving door of overpaid, over-the-hill veterans that only made things feel worse. Joe Thornton and Sergei Samsonov came…
…and went, with them more disappointment and fan disillusionment. With each rise and fall of hope, the fan base detached further and further. Then the lockout happened. I don’t know about anyone else, but a season without hockey is just about the worse thing I can think of, no matter how bad the Bruins were. Although I’m not a big fan of NBA basketball, I certainly feel their pain right now. At this point the Bruins hit rock bottom and it was probably the best thing that could have happened.
Finally the Good!
It all started when Sinden was sent out to pasture and the new regime took over. Chiarelli came in, brought Chara and Savard to Boston, and built a winner the right way in the span of four years. Sounds inconceivable based on the previous 35 years, but it really happened!
So, here are some of the things that we as B’s fans can be thankful for:
Peter Chiarelli- Say what you will, but PC is the architect of this team and without him, who knows what direction the team could have taken!
Tim Thomas- Vezina, Hart, Conn Smythe; did I miss anything?
Tyler Seguin- A gift from the Hockey Gods. May be like no other player the Bruins have ever had. Say it with me: “Thank you Kessel!”
Brad Marchand- Bruins fans need a player like this to root for. He represents so many of the things we stand for.
Last years playoffs- These playoffs had everything a fan could want; beat your bitter rivals, avenge last seasons heartbreak, grind out a seven-game series against an evil genius, and overcome all the doubters to win the cup.
The Vancouver Canucks- We so desperately needed a villain. And they played it perfectly. It almost made the victory that much sweeter!
The Parade- If you were there, you no what I’m talking about. That’s a day most of us will never forget.
I’d love to hear from you guys. Leave a comment and let me know what else I missed. What are you thankful for as a Bruins fan?