In case you missed the news earlier today, longtime Boston Bruins captain Zdeno Chara absolutely ROCKED the hockey world by announcing that he was leaving the Bruins to sign a free agent contract with the Washington Capitals. The Capitals confirmed the news shortly after.
Check it out:
In a heartfelt letter to Bruins fans Chara admitted that he would have preferred to stay in Boston but that the team was planning to "move forward with their many younger and talented players".
In other words: Chara was pushed out of Boston.
Check it out:
"Recently, the Boston Bruins have informed me that they plan to move forward with their many younger and talented players and I respect their decision. Unfortunately, my time as the proud Captain of the Bruins has come to an end."
Wow... just... wow.
Nevertheless, the always classy Chara made a point of thanking Bruins fans, the city of Boston and the team's management and ownership staff in a farewell letter, saying:
My family and I have been so fortunate to call the great city of Boston our home for over 14 years. Recently, The Boston Bruins have informed me that they plan to move forward with their many younger and talented players and I respect their decision. Unfortunately, my time as the proud Captain of the Bruins has come to an end.
I want to first of all thank the passionate and loyal Bruins fans, who shared the ups and downs of each season over the past 14 years. I’m proud that we were able to return the Stanley Cup to Boston and celebrating with all of you, in Boston, New England, and around the world, was a moment I will never forget. You all have treated my family and me as one of your own and I will always be grateful. Thank you.
I would also like to thank all of the Bruins staff. The trainers, equipment staff, medical staff (all doctors, dentists and therapists), PR and hockey operations, the front office staff, arena staff, security and everyone who helped make the past 14 years so memorable. While there are too many names to mention, please know how sincerely grateful I am to each of you.
I want to thank the Jacobs family for the opportunity to represent the Bruins as their Captain. I am grateful and proud of everything we accomplished.
To all of my teammates throughout the years in Boston, I am so lucky to have a lifetime of memories that I will never forget. From the highest highs to the lowest lows, we were always a team, we were always there for each other and those bonds and friendships will never be forgotten.
My family and I will always cherish the strong friendships and connections we made here. From the beginning in 2006, we have been embraced by this community and made to feel welcome. We will always be grateful for the opportunity to contribute to the community and for the people who always supported me and my family.
As I begin this next chapter, I want the people of Boston to know how proud I was to be a Bruin and how grateful I am for all of the support over the years. “Thank you” does not seem adequate to express my sincere gratitude. I will always be a Bruin. I will always love Boston.
The Bruins organization has responded with a video honoring their now former captain.
Check it out:
A touching video... that should have been released in 2021 after Chara retired with the Bruins.