The Boston Bruins announced today that Captain Zdeno Chara will be carrying Slovakia’s flag for the 2014 Olympic Opening Ceremony in Sochi, Russia.
This is Chara’s third Olympics and this will be his second time as the Captain of Team Slovakia. Chara will miss at least one game and possibly two games for the Boston Bruins. The Olympic Opening Ceremony takes place on February 7. The Bruins play the St. Louis Blues on February 6 and then they will play on February 8 against the Ottawa Senators before the Olympic break.
Bruins coach Claude Julien said today that it was an easy decision to allow Chara to attend the ceremony.
When you look at what Zee has done for this club, I think it’s an easy decision to make, because you’re carrying your country’s flag at the Olympics. And even if he misses a game and maybe two, I think that’s the least we can do for a guy who’s given us so much since he’s been here.
Chara has been a defensive force for the Bruins this year. He has nine goals and ten assists with a plus/minus rating of plus-5 in 45 games played.
With having already lost defenseman Dennis Seidenberg for the rest of the year, the Bruins defense will be struggling in those two games. Hopefully there will be no more injuries to the defense.
Bruins President Cam Neely said on Felger and Mazz on 98.5 The Sports Hub it was the right thing to do to let Chara go.
Zdeno’s done a lot for this organization since he’s been here. If it didn’t mean as much to him as it does, he wouldn’t have asked. So we feel it was the right thing to do. Obviously, I’d prefer to have him in the lineup, but we we feel this is a once in a lifetime opportunity for him. He really didn’t want to pass up this opportunity.
The Bruins will miss Chara’s presence in the one or two games, but when you are offered an opportunity of this caliber you just cannot turn it down. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity for Chara and he will remember this for the rest of his life.