Zdeno Chara isn’t used to being called a rookie. But this weekend, he actually was one when he stepped on the ice at the Nathan H. Hardy Memorial Alumni Game at Warrior Ice Arena. And it was quite the defense pairing on the ice.
Zdeno Chara announced his retirement earlier this year but played in the Alumni Game hours before the Boston Bruins matchup against the Colorado Avalanche at TD Garden.
Zdeno Chara got to play next to one of the all-time greats, Ray Bourque, and although it was just a charity game, Chara was honored.
“Absolute honor,” Chara said per NHL.com. “Such a legend of the sport, for the city, for the organization. Even if it’s just a charity game, a game for a good cause, it’s such a privilege and honor to be on the same team with so many guys who played for a long time and did so many good things. Very humble about it.”
Zdeno Chara played his last ever game on April 29, and before the Alumni Game, Chara revealed he hadn’t skated since then. But now he returned to the ice, this time as a rookie on the team, with legends all around. And Chara seemed to enjoy himself on the ice.
Chara was always known for his defensive abilities. He was always in the right place at the right time and brought a huge physical presence with him. But he wasn’t one making cool dekes. And especially not one scoring lacrosse goals.
Young players like Trevor Zegras and Andrei Svechnikov have scored several lacrosse goals in the NHL, but we can promise you that Zdeno Chara has never even tried. Well, now that he’s retired and playing Alumni Games, he’s doing things he’s never done on the ice. And that includes trying out on a lacrosse goal.
Video footage from the game actually shows how Chara skated with the puck behind the goal, flipped the puck, and tried to lacrosse it in goal. Well, we at least think that was the plan. Unfortunately, the attempt wasn’t great, and to nobody’s surprise, he didn’t score. But it’s fun and great to see Chara enjoying himself on the ice with some of the biggest icons to wear the B’s jersey. Well done, Big Z!
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