Gregory Campbell addressed the media for the first time since his injury earlier in the postseason. Campbell had his leg broken blocking a Evgeni Malkin shot on June 5th during game three of the Eastern Conference finals against the Pittsburgh Penguins. What the hockey world will remember is that Campbell somehow got up on that leg and played the next minute while trying to fight off the pain and the Penguins power play. He was successful in both endeavors, and when he finally was able to get off the ice, he was treated to a standing ovation, and the crowd chanting his name.
I’ll leave the rest of this to Jack Edwards.
He had surgery to repair the damage on his leg five days later. His recovery time is expected to be between six and eight weeks. While this guarantees his inability to remain out of the postseason, he has no regrets about his actions. He just saw it as part of the play and part of the game. “I’ve gotten asked that a few times, did you know it was broken? I can’t say with 100 percent certainty that I knew it was broken, but I felt it was a different feeling,” Campbell recalled. “I blocked a few shots before, but this seemed different. Then once I was able to get back on my feet, I was not positive, but fairly sure something was wrong.”
He’s become to the 2013 Cup team what Nathan Horton was in 2011. He was asked if he would bring Boston ice water to Chicago for game five, and Campbell waved off that idea. “I don’t think I will.” said Campbell. “If I don’t have the same success as Nathan, it won’t look very good on me.”
It’s clear that Campbell is missed by the fans and his fellow Bruins. Whether it’s a new player to the team or someone who has played as long as Campbell has, the respect and admiration is there for Soupy. “It’s tough to see a guy like him not being able to play in the Stanley Cup Final because he is such a big part of the team and he’s played so well this year and in the playoffs,” said forward Milan Lucic. “We do our best to try to keep him involved and try to keep him a part of it. He’s a great team guy. He likes that camaraderie that comes in the dressing room. He’s usually chirping at someone about something. It’s give and take. It keeps us close as a team and that’s something that’s a lot of fun as well and we appreciate having him on the team.”
Campbell won’t reflect too much on the past, but instead work hard as he can to see himself ready for next season’s action.
“I’m fully expecting to be 100% at camp. Maybe I won’t be participating fully at camp; I can’t say that right now. But if you look at 6-8 weeks, it puts me in mid July to late July, early August,” Campbell said. “Obviously, my training program is going to change a little bit. That’s a big part of my game, but that’s just something that I have to deal with and I’ll have to work around.”
Regardless of what happens, it’s safe to say that we all saw what true bravery, perseverance and attitude looks like on the ice that night. I’m sure we’ll get to see that again when #11 wears the Black and Gold again.