Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Disappointed Bruins hang up purple and gold

Marc Savard took off his Kobe Bryant jersey rolled it into a ball and threw it violently into the garage door of Boston Bruins Vice President Cam Neely. The Bruins center was expressing his displeasure in the clinching victory by the Boston Celtics on Tuesday night.

Teary-eyed goalie Alex Auld stopped dribbling his purple and gold basketball long enough to punt the ball into the neighbor's yard after the final buzzer sounded.

Neely hosted a party at his suburban Boston home for all Bruins players and front office personnel. "I wanted to have the gang over to cheer for the Celtics. We all cheer for one another in this city," said Neely in his purple Lamar Odom warm up suit.

Sequoia-like defenseman Zdeno Chara showed up donning a purple and gold Lakers hard hat. "I do construction in the off-season. Sometimes in Orange County."

The Celtics victory put the lowly Bruins in a very uncomfortable position. They are the lone team of Boston's four major sports franchises not included in the city's recent string of professional championships.

"Before Tuesday we were buddies, bad at what we did, but we were still buddies. That brought us closer. Now this buddy has decided to take a knife a championship," said Neely. "I can't believe they did this."

Coach Peter Chiarelli likened the situation to Gilligan's Island. "It's like for some reason everyone on the island got rescued except for Gilligan and the Skipper. And then one day Gilligan wakes up and the Skipper is gone...rescued. Yeah, it's a lot like that."

The New England Patriots won the Super Bowl in 2001, 2002 and 2004. The Boston Red Sox won the World Series in 2004 and 2007. And the Celtics joined the club this year. Six trophies in seven years has made the citizens of Boston feel as if the streets are paved in beans.

"I'm very proud to officially welcome the Celtics into the 'City of Champions.' I would also like to have a moment of silence for the only team not in the club," said Boston Mayor, Thomas M. Menino, addressing the crowd at the TD Banknorth Garden after the Celtics victory.

Neely and Chiarelli plan to meet with Celtics coach Doc Rivers sometime later this week. Neely talked with Celtics GM Danny Ainge and owner Wycliffe Grousbeck early Wednesday morning. Details were not discussed, but each hinted that the relationship could be repaired unlike the S.S. Minnow.

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