Patrice Bergeron explains embrace with teammates

Could this be the end of Bergeron's career?



The Boston Bruins put together the single greatest regular season in National Hockey League history, winning an astonishing 65 out of 82 games while setting multiple records along the way. But as Linkin Park famously sang, "...but in the end, it doesn't even matter." 

The end came in the form of an absolutely shocking postseason collapse against the Florida Panthers, halting what should have been a Stanley Cup run and a potential opportunity for longtime Bruins forward and current captain Patrice Bergeron to ride off into the sunset with another championship ring on his finger.

Instead, Bergeron pulled at the heartstrings of Bruins fans everywhere with an absolutely solemn look of bewilderment and heartbreak on the ice after the ceremonial handshakes at center ice between the two teams. He then embraced several of his teammates and saluted the fans that remained behind in a largely cleared out TD Garden, once again sparking speculation that may be the end of his distinguished career. 

Bergeron didn't give an exact window into his future plans, simply saying that he's going to take time and discuss it with his family. 

"It hurts. You compete hard and battle all year for that, so it's hard," Bergeron said. "I'm going to take some time and talk with my family and then go from there. Right now, it's hard to process anything. We're shocked and disappointed."

As far as his hugging his teammates went, Bergeron spoke about the "special bond" that he shares with them, some of whom he has played with on the Bruins for over a decade that included three Stanley Cup Final appearances and one title.

“It’s always an honor to play with these guys,” he said. “You compete. It’s been over a decade. It’s a special bond.”

Said Brad Marchand, who was a rookie on the 2010-11 Stanley Cup winning team: 

“The friendship that we’ve built and the relationship we have has been special,” Marchand said. “Hopefully it’s not (the end of Bergeron’s career). It’s up to him to make his decision and do what he decides to do moving forward. Regardless of what he decides to do, our bond will last a lifetime. It’s not just something we built out here.”

Is this the end of the road for Bergeron?