June 15, 2013

It's our anniversary: Reliving the Bruins Cup championship

By Jesse Connolly

The date of June 15 is one no Bruins' fan will ever forget. On that magical night in 2011, the B's did something their long-suffering fans thought might never happen again in their lifetimes by capturing the Stanley Cup, bringing the most glorious trophy in all of sports back to the Hub of Hockey for the first time since 1972. 

In honor of the two-year anniversary of the Black and Gold's 4-0 win out in Vancouver over the Canucks in Game 7, NEHJ is opening the vault and taking a look back at its July 2011 issue, which we fondly and proudly refer to as the "Stanley Cup Championship" edition. 

Without further ado, here are the stories we took great joy in telling about the 2011 Stanley Cup champs:

Bruins center Patrice Bergeron celebrates after Game 7. (Getty) Bruins celebrate first Stanley Cup in 39 years

It was the belief of many that the events of May 14, 2010, would leave an indelible mark on the Boston Bruins, a permanent scar, an eternal reminder of one of the biggest choke-jobs in the sport of hockey’s grand history. 

My, oh, my, what a difference a year makes. They say a tiger can’t change his stripes, but the Bruins proved in the span of precisely 398 days that a hockey team can, completing their dramatic, improbable turnaround June 15 in Vancouver with a 4-0 victory in Game 7 of the finals, capturing the Stanley Cup for the first time in 39 years...

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Cup victory unleashes fans' emotions

The Bruins’ faithful waited 39 years for their beloved Black and Gold to bring the Stanley Cup back to Boston. Not unlike the Red Sox’ historic curse-busting championship in 2004, the Bruins’ victory spurred an emotional outpouring from faithful fans. Here are excerpts of Bruins fans’ reactions on Facebook:

“Winning the Cup brought me many emotions: excitement, happiness, love for my team and pure bliss, to name a few. It was an incredible bonding moment with my dad, the man responsible for me being a hockey fan. I could finally call him and say the words I’d waited my whole life to say: ‘We won the Cup.’”
— James Cotton (Attleboro, Mass.)

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Recchi goes out on top

When Mark Recchi made the decision last summer to rejoin the Bruins for one more season, one in which he’d celebrate his 43rd birthday, there was one reason for motivation and one alone.

In what would be his 22nd year in the NHL, Recchi wanted nothing more than to ride off into the sunset with the Stanley Cup in tow. A winner of hockey’s Holy Grail in 1991 with Pittsburgh and again in 2006 with Carolina, the future Hall of Famer was determined to add a third championship to his resume, but it wasn’t simply for his own gratification...

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The Bruins road to the Stanley Cup

From their season opener in Prague in October to Game 7 of the Stanley Cup finals in Vancouver, Jesse Connolly recaps the Bruins road to the Stanley Cup month-by-month and series-by-series, chronicling their epic journey to glory... 

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Thomas' tale the ultimate feel-good story

If Bruins goalie Tim Thomas had skated out onto the ice and into the blue-painted crease in just one single, solitary game in the National Hockey League, that alone would have been one of those routine feel-good stories.

But Thomas’ story is more than routine. His story has made an entire city, an entire region feel good about its beloved hockey team, about its star goaltender and about itself. His story is one for the ages...

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Bruins original banner years

Jesse Connolly takes a look back at the Bruins' previous five Stanley Cup championships. 

1929
Bruins defeated New York Rangers, 2 games to 0

The Bruins completed a perfect postseason with their win in the finals over the Rangers, going 5-0 en route to a championship. Led by defenseman Eddie Shore — who had a team-high 28 penalty minutes in the playoffs — and stellar goaltending from Cecil “Tiny” Thompson, the Bruins outscored New York, 4-1, in the best-of-three series to claim their first Stanley Cup. The series was the first time that two American-based teams met in the final...

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Former Marine Cpl. Garrett Breton celebrated the Bruins' historic Stanley Cup championship outside TD Garden. One special Bruins' fan shares spotlight

Fans on hand at TD Garden had plenty to cheer about during Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Finals, as they watched their beloved Bruins cruise to a 4-0 victory over the Canucks to tie their series. But there was one individual on hand that night, a young man who was neither a current nor former member of the Black and Gold, who got everyone in the building to rise to their feet. 

Weymouth, Mass., native Garrett Breton, a former corporal in the U.S. Marine Corps, was honored for his service during the Bruins 8-Spoked Salute that night and had a special item in tow for his moment in the spotlight...

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Interested in purchasing the "Stanley Cup Championship" edition of New England Hockey Journal? Click here.

Jesse Connolly can be reached at jconnolly@hockeyjournal.com. Follow him on Twitter at @JesseNEHJ