After 39 long years, the Boston Bruins finally got the chance to bring the Stanley Cup back home to Boston.
After four long seven game series against Montreal, Philly, and Tampa, the B’s shut the Vancouver Canucks down 4-0 in Game 7 of the Cup Finals.
Finally, all the team’s hard work has paid off, and It’s no surprise that the three stars of this game were Brad Marchand, Patrice Bergeron, and Tim Thomas. Marchand finished his rookie season with two amazing goals, while Bergeron didn’t disappoint putting two past Canucks goalie Roberto Luongo as well.
And although Thomas admitted he was extremely nervous in net for the last time this season, he again came out on top and became the first goaltender to receive the Conn Smythe Trophy since it was awarded to Cam Ward in 2006. Each year this special award is presented to the player who is determined to be most valuable to his team during the Stanley Cup playoffs.
“Yeah, I was scared,” Thomas admitted in his postgame press conference. “I won’t lie. I had nerves yesterday and today. I faked it as well as I could, and I faked my way all the way to the Stanley Cup.”
That he did, and everyone was beaming to watch Thomas receive this honor.
The 2010-11 season has been a long one for the Bruins, with many ups and downs. Center Marc Savard, who did not appear to be celebrating with his team last night, made his anticipated return early in the season after being out long-term with a concussion, only to suffer another blow in January. Right-winger Nathan Horton also suffered a severe concussion after blindside hit by Aaron Rome in Game 3 of this series, but luckily recovered in time to accompany the team to Vancouver yesterday and took his turn raising the Cup on the ice.
Horton’s even played a special part in helping his teammates to overcome Vancouver’s home-ice advantage (the B’s have never won a Game 7 on opponent ice). He brought some water taken directly from TD Garden ice and poured it on the Rogers Arena ice right before warm-ups.
“I believe in my teammates and everyone believes in each other,” Horton said. “We play for each other. We’re excited to play for each other and we have a great bunch of guys from the players, coaching staff, management, owners, everybody. Everyone cares about each other and that’s why we won the Stanley Cup tonight.”
While the Bruins are still basking in their Cup glory, so are the diehard fans. This season marks the most-watched season in NESN’s history, the flagship network for the Boston Bruins.
Head Coach Claude Julien noted that the fans are as much a part of this win as his team, and although many have doubted his over the years and especially during the past few months, Julien was ecstatic to be able to share this victory with them.
“We love our fans,” Julien stated. “Our fans have been supporting us a long time. We know it’s been since 1972 and they’re dying for a hockey championship team, and we’re finally able to deliver that for them.”