Every Bruins fan will forever look back at the 2010-11 season with warm thoughts and a smile on their faces.
The Bruins won their first Stanley Cup since 1972, ending a 39-year drought. And there were so many fan favorites on the team.
The Bruins didn’t have a player on the team that had more points than games during the regular season, but they were a team machine.
No other team had more shutouts than the B’s 11, and Bruins goaltender Tim Thomas eventually won the Conn Smythe Trophy for the post-season’s most valuable player. It all went down to a Game 7 in the Stanley Cup finals for the Bruins, getting there for the first time in 21 years.
In the finals, the Bruins met the Presidents’ Trophy-winning Vancouver Canucks, who won the first two games at home.
Bruins won the following two to tie the series 2-2 but were just one game away from losing the Cup after a loss in Game 5. The Bruins managed to keep the series alive, and Zdeno Chara, a future Hall of Famer and team captain, remembers everything about what happened before and during the game.
He especially remembers some guys in the team’s incredible pre-game speeches.
”Before the game, a few guys spoke. Mark Recchi sort of made a speech like we all had a clue that it could be his last game, but he really said to just focus on each shift, don’t look at the clock, don’t look at anything, just every shift, do your best,” Chara said on Cue The Memories.
Chara listened to Recchi’s advice, and although the Bruins held a three-goal lead heading into the third period, Chara never looked at the clock.
”I really took that in. Like, ’I’m not going to look at the clock in the whole game.’ And I swear, I didn’t know what time we were at,” Chara said.
”I knew we were up four, but I didn’t know how much time was left until Andrew Ference was jumping over the boards, and he’s telling me, ’Get ready. I want you to have the last shift.’ And that just tells you what a great team we were. That he, as a teammate, wanted me to have that privilege and glory to be on the ice at the buzzer … it was such a selfless act. I couldn’t believe it. I said, ’What do you mean the last shift?’ First time I look up and I realize it’s less than a minute left in the game. He’s like, ’Get ready. I’m going for 20 seconds, and then I’ll come off so you can go on.’ That’s when I knew we got it. That was the first time I knew we were going to win the Stanley Cup.
For Chara, it’s the perfect example of how to describe that Bruins team.
”That was the kind of team we were. We were happy for each other, and I will be forever grateful and thankful for that. Otherwise, I’d probably be surprised by the buzzer.”