Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Duncan Keith is from Winnipeg, so you might think that he would have grown up in the early to mid-90s as a fan of the Jets — these Jets, of course.
However, a young Keith grew up rooting for a team that played its hockey almost 2,000 miles away. Now, as a 29-year-old blue liner in the NHL, Keith will have to go through the team he grew up rooting for.
At the Stanley Cup Final media day on Tuesday, Keith admitted that he grew up rooting for the team standing in the way of his second Cup win — the Boston Bruins.
“Personally, for myself growing up as a kid, a little kid, I was always a big Boston Bruins fan,” Keith admitted. “For me, it’s going to be neat to go back there and play in the Stanley Cup Final.
“I think the whole history behind the teams and the tradition with both teams definitely adds to the excitement.”
Naturally, Keith’s adoration of the Bruins centered around one of the all-time best at Keith’s position, Ray Bourque.
“I don’t wanna make a big deal out of that, it’s a long time ago,” Keith said when pressed further about his Bruins fandom. “Just Ray Bourque was one of my favorite players. I think he was a pretty awesome defenseman.”
Of course, those allegiances have long since passed, and now Keith and the rest of his Chicago teammates have set their sights on taking down the Bruins in this year’s Cup Final, which begins at the United Center on Wednesday night.
“I’m sure they’re gonna bring some things we haven’t seen,” Keith said. “Most of their team is returning from the Stanley Cup-winning team. Right there it shows the experience they have and we know they’re a great team defensively. We’ve seen what they’ve been able to do in the playoffs so far. I think no matter what or who we face, now that it’s Boston, we always have to be mindful of what we have to do. At the same time, I think our focus has to be on what we’re able to do.”
Keith has played four career games in Boston, including scoring twice and adding an assist in a 5-2 Blackhawks win on Jan. 7, 2010.