BOSTON – From one age-defying, championship-winning Boston captain to another.
Tom Brady was pleased to learn Thursday that when he was taking the field for New England Patriots minicamp, Zdeno Chara was warming up at TD Garden, hopeful to play in Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Final despite a serious injury.
“It sucks for him to have a broken jaw, but knowing him, he’ll be out there if he can,” Brady told reporters.
The quarterback and the defenceman have an “amazing” relationship, according to Brady, who was happy to narrate the Boston Bruins hype video that plays on the Garden Jumbotron before games at the final.
“He’s accomplished a lot in his career, and he represents a great team. We’ve been in the same area, so following him and following the Bruins, it’s been an exciting time to be around here,” Brady said.
“He’s been a great kind of role model for people, very tough, very disciplined, very dedicated guy. One of the nicest guys I’ve ever met in my life, and just happy to see that team be in the position they’re in.”
The Patriots, who are set to receive their Super Bowl rings at owner Robert Kraft’s house Thursday night, have been out in full support during the Bruins’ playoff run.
Coach Bill Belichick waved the Spoked B as Game 2’s banner captain, a role Rob Gronkowski fulfilled with gusto in Round 1.
Julian Edelman, who was featured chugging beer on the Bruins’ big screen during Game 7 of the Maple Leafs series, sprinted onto the field Thursday wearing a Bruins sweater over top of his gear.
Kraft was been in the stands for both games 1 and 2 of the Final, rallying the barn by standing up and waving a towel.
The support is mutual.
“We all admire Tom and what he’s been able to accomplish, the Patriots, the whole organization, the team and players and the coaching staff,” Chara said recently.
“They’ve been doing it for a decade, they’ve been on top of their game. It’s not a secret that he’s one of those world athletes that everybody looks up to.
“He’s been very successful in what he does and how he prepares himself. He’s a true professional and obviously a great human being and very smart and well spoken. I only have great experiences talking to him. I really admire him.”
Belichick was asked what Chara’s eagerness to play Game 5 says about the toughness of hockey players.
“It’s the Stanley Cup so – just trying to see if we can get a couple of first downs out here,” he replied.
— New England Patriots (@Patriots) June 6, 2019