BOSTON (CBS) - Mr. Claude Julien I bow at your feet! I Kiss your Stanley Cup Ring! Never one to like your style of coaching, never one that appreciated your stubbornness, I will never again question your decisions of coaching a hockey team.
Mr. Julien, you have done what the likes of Don Cherry, Fred Creighton, Bep Guidolin, Gerry Cheevers, Terry O'Reilly, Mike Milbury, Steve Kasper, Brian Sutter, Rick Bowness, Pat Burns, Mike Keenan, could not do. Dave Lewis & Robbie Ftorek were clueless about what you have accomplished.
Mr. Julien, you have brought the City of Boston a Stanley Cup Championship and you did it your way, critics like me, be damn! You NEVER wavered in what your plan, whatever it was, would be. You didn't change your mind on who would dress and who would sit. As you have said numerous times, all that matters is what those men in the locker room believe in. And they believed in what you said, planned, drew up, and they went out and did it all and captured the most beautiful Chalice in the world.
It's has been such a long time since the Boston Bruins owned this City and our hearts because of all the things that have happened along this 39 year Cup hiatus. So many times I would watch the Final and say to myself or friends I was watching it with, "when the hell are WE gonna win this thing?" Well, after Wednesday nights thorough domination of the Canucks in Game 7, as Tim Thomas said, "You want it, You got it!"
Read/Watch: Julien Enjoying Cup Through Players
From Thomas' outstanding goaltending to the work of Brad "The Rat" or "Li'l Ball of Hate" Marchand, to the great defensive corp, the Bruins never gave the Canucks a chance to get into this game and threaten the Championship. It was the line of Patrice Bergeron, Marchand and immediate retiree Mark Recchi that led the way. Marchand & Bergeron with two goals each and it was Marchand's first goal that was insurance and really took all the steam out of Vancouver. They knew it wasn't gonna happen for them on this night!
Historical things happened in this years playoff. It may be a long time before a goaltender has the microscopic goals against and save percentage that Thomas finished up the Stanley Cup Final. He and the Bruins played AND won three game sevens, two of them by shutout!
Tim Thomas assuredly was the Conn Smythe award winner and if anyone had threatened him for it, Marchand would have been the one, scoring 11 goals in this years playoff as a rookie.
But it was the foresight and stay the course, no in-game adjustments of Coach Julien that ultimately led the this Boston Bruins team through every loss with resiliency and how they would bounce back and take the next game. Especially after falling behind 0-2 in the opening round and the final round. Mr Julien, you continued to overlook all the media who wanted you to change your whole being on how to coach. As you said last night after the game, "you're going to be subject to criticism, but the most important thing is what's going on inside that dressing room. There wasn't a guy that didn't believe in what we were doing. Today you're rewarded for it. Had I worried about that other stuff, I probably wouldn't be standing here today."
And with that, let the Duck Boats roll on Saturday with Mr. Julien at the Head of the Class.
The Boston Bruins have surprised and entertained us for 63 days from the end of the regular season through the end of the playoffs culminating in winning the, their, our, final National Hockey League game.
2011 Stanley Cup Champions, Boston Bruins!
One wish, lets not make it another 39 years!
Ric Duarte has covered hockey and the Bruins for various media outlets since 1986. You can follow Ric at BruinsDieHard.com and at twitter @bruins_diehard.
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