It had been quite a while since the Bruins won a game in Los Angeles – October 2007 to be exact. However, they came into the game Saturday with a lifetime record of 79-34-13-4 vs. the Kings. And game number 131 was another victory for the B’s.
The night marked a significant milestone for team captain Zdeno Chara too, who was playing in his 1,000 NHL game. While not as important, it also served as a key victory for goalie Tim Thomas – his first against the Kings, after previously sporting a 0-1-4 record with a 2.39 goals against average and .919 save percentage.
After downing the Kings 4-2, here’s what they were saying back in the Bruins locker room…
Coach Claude Julien on the overall game – “I think it was a harder game physically; they are a good club. They played hard and we just really had to respond and I thought our guys handled it well. There was an exciting finish there and our goaltender stands tall for us but we still managed to go out there in the third [period] and have a two-goal lead. Again, it was exciting at the end but this was a hard earned two points and I think our guys deserve a lot of credit for that.”
Julien on Chara’s 1000th game – “I think everybody knows how important it was to this team to win it for him on his 1000th game. He’s earned that respect around his teammates and he’s earned that respect of the organization as well for everything he has done. The one thing I told the guys before the game was that when you go through a milestone like that the one thing you want is to have a good souvenir from it and a win is what we needed here and we managed to get it.”
Milan Lucic on the overall game – “I think a big difference for us was that we responded more than anything. They [the Kings] obviously came out just as hard as the Sharks did and played a real hard game but we were kind of on our heels and we couldn’t get ourselves going for some reason against the Sharks. Today, we were able to get that first goal and go with it. We did a good job in all three zones and Timmy [Tim Thomas] played great; it’s good to win this one.”
Chara on the overall game – “Obviously we knew the meaning of this game and it was a really tough game. Both teams played really hard, a lot of battles, a lot of physicality, big hits, and both goalies made some big saves. I thought we really played desperate hockey. For the whole game we were blocking shots and we did a decent job killing the penalties and then we scored some important, big goals. For sure it was a big win for us.”
Chara on his 1,000th game – “It’s a great feeling. Anytime you win a hockey game it’s a great feeling. You can see that the mood in the room after the game was really, really good. I can’t ask for anything more than what the guys gave me tonight. I appreciate it; it’s a great group of guys. I’m really proud to be part of this team and this group. You can see that they battle really hard for me and for everybody. I thought that this game had special meaning for everybody.”
Prior to the game, Chara came on MayorsManor to share some memories from his first 999 games. You can catch that interview here.
More from Chara’s post-game media scrum: