Boston Bruins Mark Recchi: One Class Act

Mark RitterSenior Writer IJanuary 5, 2010

BOSTON - JANUARY 01:  Mark Recchi #28 of the Boston Bruins handles the puck during the game against the Philadelphia Flyers during the 2010 Bridgestone Winter Classic at Fenway Park on January 1, 2010 in Boston, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)
Elsa/Getty Images

Written By: Mark “The Hard Hitter” Ritter

Lost in all the hoopla over Boston Bruins forward Marco Sturm scoring the winning goal at the Bridgestone Winter Classic at Fenway Park on Saturday afternoon was Mark Recchi’s tying goal, the goal that started the comeback.

In speaking with Recchi in the Bruins dressing room last Friday, his reaction to media questions was more animated than anyone in the Bruins locker room. To be fair, every player was excited, every player loved the ice, the atmosphere and the experience of being on the ice at Fenway Park, but there was something about Recchi that stood out, his appreciation just seemed to be at a heightened level.

So, when Recchi scored the tying goal on Saturday at 17:42 of the third period, I was thrilled for him. The Bruins crowd, which had been somewhat quiet throughout the game, launched out of their seats to celebrate the tying marker, it was a sight to see and a great moment for Recchi.

When asked about the his goal Recchi responded, “You know, to be able to tie the game up, we had a lot of pressure, the last power play, and we really wanted to, you know, have a big win.” Said Recchi. “...All the guys battled hard for loose pucks and we were able to create that opening and when I was in my spot and was fortunate to bank it in. It was pretty awesome, I’ll tell you that.”

Drafted by the Pittsburgh Penguins in the fourth round (#67 overall) in the 1988 NHL Entry Draft, Recchi has played in 1,531 career NHL games. He currently leads the NHL with 1,465 career points and, in my mind, is kinda the last of the Mohican's, the last of the great forwards to dominate the 1990’s.

Recchi, who has eight goals and 23 points in 41 games played this season, did not take Saturday’s game for granted and, by all accounts, soaked in everything. “It was a pretty cool experience today and it’s definitely something that you’ll never forget, I’ll never forget; and to be able to score a big goal like that is always a nice bonus.”

Clearly, Recchi has scored some pretty big goals in his career, but none of them in front of 38,112 fans at Fenway Park, a fact that was not lost on Recchi. “Just knowing that, number one, it (the goal) tied the game, and then the whole energy of the building, the whole being at Fenway, it kicked in when I got to the bench. We got to the bench and looking around, realizing the place was going nuts, it was a very special feeling that’s for sure.

Like many hockey players before him, Recchi has been a role model and hockey hero for many young hockey players. Recchi, who had been wearing a Bobby Orr baseball cap with the number four on the front for most of the weekend was asked to comment about the cap. “Everybody who knows him knows what a special person he is and (are) very fortunate to know him and be friends with him. Said Recchi. “You know, I just wish I could be as classy as he is. He’s one of the best people I’ve ever met and one of the best hockey players to ever play, so it was great to have him out there and it was great to have him as our team captain. It was an honor.”

Funny, after meeting and speaking to Mark in person, I think, if given the chance, Orr may very well say the same thing about Recchi.

Until next time,

Peace!