Chris Bourque’s long, strange trip just got a bit more odd.
Bourque was traded by the Washington Capitals to the Boston Bruins for prospect Zach Hamill sending Bourque, the AHL’s top scorer this season, to the city his father Raymond carved out his Hall-Of-Fame career in.
Bourque had 27 goals and 66 assists, good for 93 points, with the Hershey Bears but lost out on league MVP honors to Lightning prospect Cory Conacher. Bourque spent the majority of his career in the Capitals organization but also got a 20-game spin with the Pittsburgh Penguins. In 33 career NHL games Bourque scored one goal and three assists.
Bourque, 26, may not even see time in Boston (or Providence in the AHL) as he’ll be an unrestricted free agent this summer. Maybe he won’t need to deal with dad’s shadow directly after all. It’s doubtful that the Bruins will let him walk, however.
Hamill was at one point a top prospect in the Bruins organization but has since fallen on their depth chart. Hamill finished this past season with just eight goals and 13 assists in 41 games in Providence. He’ll be a restricted free agent this summer.
Jarome Iginla will forever be known as the face of the Calgary Flames. He’s the team captain and unquestioned leader of the team and whether the team has done well or not, he’ll be the heart and soul of the Flames.
However, with how things are set up in Calgary and how the team is always on the edge of being blown up to start over, could Iginla’s days of trying to win a Stanley Cup for Calgary be over with before he has a shot to get it done? It’s a distinct possibility and because of it, Iginla could be put in the same position that Ray Bourque was put in back in 2000.
Bourque told Eric Francis of the Calgary Sun about what it was like to be put in that spot and how tough it was for him and how tough it’ll be on Iginla to potentially do the same. It’s a decision he ended up having no regrets over.
“The reason I left was because it wasn’t a healthy situation at all. It was time. In some ways, I don’t think it was a fair situation to be in after all those years. I was 38 years old, and I was affected mentally by the situation, and I needed to get into a better situation if I was going to continue playing. I wanted to get back into the playoffs and compete for a Cup, but that wasn’t going to happen in Boston and hadn’t happened for quite awhile.”
Sound familiar? It could be the exact kind of situation Iginla has to face up to in Calgary. It’s similar to what could happen with Daniel Alfredsson in Ottawa as well. Iginla is just 34 years-old, but with the likelihood that the team and GM Jay Feaster will have to blow it all up lingering, other teams might be wise to bug Calgary about what it would take to get Iginla out of Calgary for a shot at a Cup.
That’s right, our fun summer project takes over this week and I’m giving you my thoughts on the best and worst sweaters of all time on a team by team basis. I’ll thank Craig Calcaterra at Hardball Talk for giving me the idea on how to help kill time as he did the same thing there, but with the rich history of great and awful sweaters out there we’ve got a lot of fun to have.
There’s no rhyme nor reason to how the teams come out, so be patient if you’re waiting to see one particular team. To get things started, the latest Stanley Cup champions get the honors.
Best: You’re going to find that a lot of my favorites lean heavily on the 1980s and 1990s and that’s the case with the Bruins. Their jerseys from the mid-1970s until 1995 are a simple thing of beauty. The home white and road black with the spoked “B” as well as a menacing bruin head on the shoulders capped off by a neatly numbered and lettered jersey gave the Bruins an easy-on-the-eyes iconic look. No need for flash and dash with the Bruins of that age, just classic elegance.
Worst: Every great era in uniform history is usually followed up by some God-awful mistake and the Bruins pulled that off in horrible, legendary fashion from 1995-2004. A bright gold third jersey with a bruins head as the centerpiece that wasn’t so much ferocious or intimidating as it was emo and cuddly. Vomit, vomit, vomit. The jagged edges on the bottom of the jersey and on the sleeves and collar with the “Bruins” block wordmark on the shoulders offered nothing but indifference in its awfulness.
It was all over when people referred to that Bruins third as the “Winnie The Pooh jersey.” To make matters worse, the Bruins played like Pooh with his head stuck in a honey jar and even had the gall to make Cam Neely and Ray Bourque wear that in their time in Boston.
Old-timey favorite: Let’s throw it back to 1934. The Bruins change from brown and gold to black and gold saw them with same colored stripes on the sleeves and a big, block letter “B” on the front. It’s a look that worked so well for the Bruins that they would wear these throwbacks back during the NHL’s 75th anniversary season in 1991-1992. The Bruins always did better doing things simply and this one is a true beauty.
Assessment: Their modern jerseys are nice. They’re a nod to the past with enough going on to make them current. Their third jersey leaves a lot to be desired and look more like a pajama set with the lack of striping, but the use of a logo that resembles the franchise’s original one is a great touch. It’d be fun to see them do something more with gold though and perhaps swapping out their current thirds for what they used in the 2010 Winter Classic would be a more fun move. Getting gold right is tough for a jersey, but that Winter Classic throwback-like jersey did it great.