It’s almost like the media is contractually obligated to mention the Phil Kessel trade anytime the Leafs and Bruins play. (PHT: guilty as charged!)
Not without reason, mind you — it was a fairly huge deal. Kessel fell out of favor in Boston before getting flipped to Toronto for a treasure chest of draft picks. Since the trade, all things have come up Bruin: Tyler Seguin, Jared Knight, Dougie Hamilton…and that whole 2011 Stanley Cup thingy.
Tonight, it wasn’t just the media bringing up the Kessel trade — it was the TD Garden faithful. To thank Kessel for all he’s done for the organization, Bruins fans decided to give him the business. Shortly after Seguin scored to make it 6-1 (his third and final point of the evening) the Garden erupted into a “thank you Kes-sel” chant:
It was a forgettable night for Kessel (no points, minus-1 rating, one shot on goal), but that shouldn’t take away from how good he’s been thus far. Kessel had seven goals and five assists in Toronto’s first five games and despite tonight’s loss, the Leafs are still within a point of top spot in the division. So yes, the trade looks good for Toronto.
Of course, it looks really good for the Bruins.
If you took a poll of most passionate sports cities in North America, Boston would certainly be in the conversation. Years of futility for every team NOT named the Celtics meant it was a fanbase with plenty of pent up energy as well. But with the Bruins’ Stanley Cup victory, each of the four major sports teams in the city has won a championship in the last ten years. In the Patriots and Red Sox cases—multiple championships.
What a difference a decade makes.
For all of the parades over the last few years, the Boston Police Department has said that Saturday’s “rolling rally” for the Boston Bruins is the largest celebration in the city’s history. It certainly helped that the city of Boston chose to hold the event on a Saturday morning so everyone who wanted to make it to parade could attend. Add almost four decades of building excitement, mix in a beautiful June day in New England, and it should be no surprise that the masses were out in full force.
The best news coming from the parade is that the city was able to host almost a million people without any reported incidents (assuming we don’t classify Brad Marchand rapping an incident). When asked what he expected for the parade, here’s what Cam Neely told reporters:
“Mayhem. These fans have been waiting a long, long time for this. They deserve this. Today’s their day to really celebrate this. It’s going to be great.”
At the rally before the parade, Neely addressed the crowd directly:
“Also, we can’t thank you, the fans, enough,” said Neely. “It’s such a privilege for our players to play in front of you guys. The support you guys give us all year long has been incredible. You guys have waited too long for this. But enjoy it. Enjoy the heck out of this.”
Just about every player, coach, and executive told the crowd that they can’t wait to bring the Cup back again. But after 39 years, it might be a good idea to sit back and enjoy this one for a little while. After today’s parade, the team will be able to do just that. Relax.
Congrats to all the Bruins fans who have been waiting for a long time for this day. If you were able to make it to the parade today in Boston, let us hear your stories in the comments.
First it was the Patriots. Then the Red Sox and after that it was the Celtics. At this point, Boston should have an idea of how to handle these championship celebrations and large gatherings in their downtown area. If we thought there were a lot of people in Vancouver for the big Game 7 viewing (approx 100,000), just imagine the crowd expected to gather around Boston Common and Copley Square.
Officials are bracing the city for a million fans to join in the celebration on Saturday morning. That’s not an exaggeration—they are literally expected one million human beings hoping to catch a glimpse of the Stanley Cup and/or their victorious team. It’s hard to believe Chicago estimated TWO million happy humans for their parade last season! From the Boston Herald, here are the plans for the celebration:
“The Boston Bruins will hold an invite-only ceremony inside the TD Garden which will be simulcast to big screens in the Boston Common and Copley Square, where they will have a formal presentation ceremony as well as speeches from the owners and players.
Police also said today they expect 1 million fans to pour into the city tomorrow to watch the parade.
The event will take place before the so called “rolling rally” that will take the players and the trophy through the city on Duck Boats. There will be no stops along the rally route, which will end at Copley Plaza.”
On the heels of the riots in Vancouver, a crowd that size is bound to have city leaders a bit apprehensive. The difference is the celebratory tone of the party should produce a completely different atmosphere. Moreover, the city is doing its best to spread the party out as much as possible; their tactic is to avoid a centralized meeting place. All of the speeches will be delivered inside the TD Garden to an invitation-only crowd. Once completed, the team will travel along the parade route giving fans ample opportunity to see the team and the famous trophy. Without a centralized area, the city will be able to deliver the resources needed for a gathering that size. In other words, it’s easier to make sure everyone has a restroom they can frequent after copious amounts of Samuel Adams.
Even though fans have the opportunity to check out their favorite Bruins from any point on the parade route, if they really want to see anything, some insiders say fans might want to seek higher ground or a place to watch it on television. There’s no word if the Bruins sold the broadcast rights.
Every year we do a story like this and every year we’re blown away by the staggering prices but you won’t believe what you’ll have to pay in order to get tickets to the Stanley Cup finals. This year with the games taking place in Vancouver and Boston, two of the normally pricier tickets in the NHL to begin with, the demand for tickets to the finals are sky high and likewise the prices are too.
According to ticket search site for fans FanSnap, if you’re aiming for tickets in either Boston of Vancouver expect to pay up in a big way to get them on the secondary market.
According to the site, the average ticket price for seats to Games 1,2, or 5 at Rogers Arena in Vancouver will break the bank for $1,927. If you’re aiming for tickets just to Game 1 and want to see the first Stanley Cup final game in Vancouver since 1994, you’ll be paying an average of $1,430. If you’re hoping to catch a break on tickets, you’ll be looking to get to Boston for Games 1,2, or 6.
For tickets to TD Garden in Boston for any of those three games, the average price will kick your bank account to the tune of an average of $1,109. If you just want to be at the first Stanley Cup finals game in Boston since 1990 you’ll be looking to pay an average of $935 to Game 3.
Of course, if you’re looking for single ticket deals there are some to be had though according to FanSnap. In Boston, a seat can be had in the balcony for Game 4 for $398. If you want to skimp out on a cheap ticket in Vancouver, you’ll need to sit in the upper level on the goal end at Game 1 for a highly affordable price of $600.
While high ticket prices for the finals aren’t a shock by any means seeing such astronomical numbers never gets less stunning to see. Seeing how rough the ride is to get tickets in Canada in a city where the home team has their best shot at a Stanley Cup in their 40 year history makes it all the more fascinating to see. What we’ll be curious to see how out of control things get if there’s a Game 7 to be played there.