In case you missed the news earlier yesterday, longtime Boston Bruins captain Zdeno Chara absolutely ROCKED the hockey world by leaving the Bruins to sign a free agent contract with the Washington Capitals.
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."
In a Zoom interview with the media earlier today Chara clarified things a bit, but it's clear why he left the Bruins: They didn't want him. At least not in the capacity that he saw for himself.
Chara claims that he had discussions with GM Don Sweeney and that Sweeney informed him he, "would not be in the starting lineup for the season, not starting some games and not playing some back-to-back games. I would be more a reserve type of player." That doesn't exactly jive with a competitive guy like Chara. On thing's for sure though... the fire still burns inside the big man.
"We were in that pause when we'd usually start a season," says Chara. "That time was when I decided that if I started skating, going back to training, I would be quickly honest with myself about whether there was any hesitation about going back to the ice. That never appeared," he said in a news conference Thursday. "To me, that was an indication that I have lots of gas left and still want to do my thing. That's my motivation: Still proving that I can play."
So where do the Capitals come in?
"A few days ago, Washington informed us about their interest and I saw this opportunity that I didn't want to pass on. It was a good fit for me and my family," Chara said.
And the rest, as they say, is history...